Magneto-optical trapping of strontium for use as a mobile frequency reference

Kock, Bjorn Ole (2013). Magneto-optical trapping of strontium for use as a mobile frequency reference. University of Birmingham. Ph.D.

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Atomic Caesium clocks have made an astonishing development in the past few decades, with them gaining an order of magnitude in precision every decade. A new generation of atomic optical clocks is now emerging, which is moving to the forefront of timekeeping. By going from microwave to optical frequencies these clocks are now reaching fractional uncertainty levels in the 10\(^-\)\(^1\)\(^8\), opening a whole new range of exciting applications. This thesis presents the design and implementation of an experiment for laser cooling of strontium atoms, focusing on the mobility of the setup, opening a range of new applications as a mobile clock. The experimental apparatus applies a range of new techniques for strontium, such as the use of a two dimensional magneto-optical trap for pre cooling atoms, allowing for a compact and transportable system. A mobile laser system for laser cooling strontium atoms was realized. This includes a frequency doubling system for the main cooling transition. The constructed monolithic frequency doubling cavity has generated 300 mW of blue light and proven to be a stable setup suitable for a mobile system. The 3D-MOT was able to capture 4 * 10\(^5\) atoms with a long lifetime of 5.5 s, with further improvements for a significant increase in atom number currently being implemented.

Type of Work: Thesis (Doctorates > Ph.D.)
Award Type: Doctorates > Ph.D.
College/Faculty: Colleges (2008 onwards) > College of Engineering & Physical Sciences
School or Department: School of Physics and Astronomy
Funders: None/not applicable
Subjects: Q Science > QC Physics


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