Atomic Physics Seminars

Wednesday, April 4, 2018
3:30 PM
Physics Building, Room 204
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"A trapped-atom enclosed-area interferometer using reciprocal circular trajectories"

Edward Moan , UVA-Department of Physics
[Host: Cass Sackett]

We describe progress towards a rotation sensor using ultracold atoms.  A Bose-Einstein condensate is loaded into weak cylindrically symmetric harmonic trap.  The condensate is split and recombined using off-resonant Bragg laser pulses.  After the clouds are split, they oscillate in the trap.  By analyzing the trajectories of the clouds we can optimize the trap such that the frequency is equal along different axes.  Next, we split the condensate twice, creating four clouds that traverse a circular path around the trap center.  After completing an integer number of orbits the clouds can be recombined, forming two reciprocal interferometers whose phase difference is sensitive to rotations but rejects other common-mode noise sources.  We have observed closed circular trajectories with a diameter of 0.6 mm, corresponding to a Sagnac phase of 1500 seconds times the rotation rate, or about 0.1 rad for an Earth-rate rotation.

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