Microwave ionization of Rydberg states of the barium ion
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We have investigated the electric field ionization of highly excited (ns) and (nd) Rydberg states of the barium ion by microwave fields. For states with a principal quantum number \(\) the observed microwave ionization threshold fields show the Z 3 /3n 5 dependence expected on the basis of previously observed ionization of neutral Rydberg states with Z=1. We show that for states in this n regime microwave ionization is a state selective detection technique. Threshold fields for states with n>40, however, depart from the expected behaviour, the thresholds become broader and shift to higher fields. For a total of 58 states we present the field strengths where 90%, 50% and 10% ionization occur.
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