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Heterodyne Spectrum of the Fluorescence from Optical Molasses

  • P. D. Lett
  • C. I. Westbrook
  • R. N. Watts
  • S. L. Rolston
  • C. E. Tanner
  • W. D. Phillips
  • P. L. Gould
Conference paper

Abstract

Since its demonstration in 1985 by a group at AT&T Bell Labs,1 optical molasses has proven to be an exciting subject for both experimental and theoretical investigation. One of the most important features of optical molasses is the extremely low temperatures to which the atoms are cooled. The limiting temperature of optical molasses has recently been a topic of intense experimental and theoretical investigation. The discovery last year of temperatures well below the accepted cooling limit2 has prompted the proposal of entirely new mechanisms by which light can damp atomic motion3,4. These mechanisms predict much larger damping coefficients and can account for measured temperatures much lower than previously thought possible. To date, optical molasses temperatures have been measured by ballistic methods. We report here a new spectroscopic technique for measuring the atomic velocity distribution, which provides a new way to study the dynamics of cold atoms interacting with laser beams. The observed spectrum has an unexpectedly narrow feature.

Keywords

Local Oscillator Laser Cool Ballistic Technique Initial Velocity Distribution Narrow Feature 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.

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Copyright information

© Plenum Press, New York 1990

Authors and Affiliations

  • P. D. Lett
    • 1
  • C. I. Westbrook
    • 1
  • R. N. Watts
    • 1
  • S. L. Rolston
    • 1
  • C. E. Tanner
    • 1
  • W. D. Phillips
    • 1
  • P. L. Gould
    • 2
  1. 1.Center for Atomic, Molecular and Optical PhysicsNational Institute of Standards and Technology (formerly the National Bureau of Standards) PHYS B-160GaithersburgUSA
  2. 2.Dept. of PhysicsUniv. Of ConnecticutStorrsUSA

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