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Fundamental symmetries studies with cold trapped francium atoms at ISAC


Francium combines a heavy nucleus (Z = 87) with the simple atomic structure of alkalis and is a very promising candidate for precision tests of fundamental symmetries such as atomic parity non-conservation measurements. Fr has no stable isotopes, and the ISAC radioactive beam facility at TRIUMF, equipped with an actinide target, promises to provide record quantities of Fr atoms, up to 1010/s for some isotopes. We discuss our plans for a Fr on-line laser trapping facility at ISAC and experiments with samples of cold Fr atoms. We outline our plans for a measurement of the nuclear anapole moment – a parity non-conserving, time-reversal conserving moment that arises from weak interactions between nucleons – in a chain of Fr isotopes. Its measurement is a unique probe for neutral weak interactions inside the nucleus.

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Correspondence to G. Gwinner.

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Gwinner, G., Gomez, E., Orozco, L.A. et al. Fundamental symmetries studies with cold trapped francium atoms at ISAC. Hyperfine Interact 172, 45–51 (2006). https://doi.org/10.1007/s10751-007-9523-6

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  • Weak interaction
  • Francium
  • Anapole


  • 32.80.Ys
  • 24.80.+y