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Observation of optomechanical strain in a cold atomic cloud

Event Details

Event Dates: 

Monday, February 5, 2018 - 4:00pm

Seminar Location: 

  • JILA X317

Speaker Name(s): 

Noam Matzliah

Speaker Affiliation(s): 

Weizmann Institute
Seminar Type/Subject

Scientific Seminar Type: 

  • JILA Public Seminar

Event Details & Abstract: 

We report the observation of the optomechanical strain applied to thermal and to quantum degenerate 87Rb atomic clouds when illuminated by an intense, far detuned homogeneous laser beam. In this regime the atomic cloud acts as a lens which focuses the laser beam. As a back action, the atoms experience a force opposite to the beam deflection, which depends on the atomic cloud density profile. We experimentally demonstrate the basic features of this force, distinguishing it from the well-established scattering and dipole forces. The observed strain saturates, ultimately limiting the momentum impulse that can be transferred to the atoms. This optomechanical force may effectively induce inter-particle interactions, which can be optically tuned