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Opt Express. 2009 Aug 3;17(16):13601-8.

Single-laser, one beam, tetrahedral magneto-optical trap.

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  • 1Department of Physics, SUPA, University of Strathclyde, Glasgow G4 0NG, UK.

Abstract

We have realized a 4-beam pyramidal magneto-optical trap ideally suited for future microfabrication. Three mirrors split and steer a single incoming beam into a tripod of reflected beams, allowing trapping in the four-beam overlap volume. We discuss the influence of mirror angle on cooling and trapping, finding optimum efficiency in a tetrahedral configuration. We demonstrate the technique using an ex-vacuo mirror system to illustrate the previously inaccessible supra-plane pyramid MOT configuration. Unlike standard pyramidal MOTs both the pyramid apex and its mirror angle are non-critical and our MOT offers improved molasses free from atomic shadows in the laser beams. The MOT scheme naturally extends to a 2-beam refractive version with high optical access. For quantum gas experiments, the mirror system could also be used for a stable 3D tetrahedral optical lattice.

PMID:
19654767
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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