Modifying strontium optical lattice clock for quantum simulation

Reed, Daniel (2018). Modifying strontium optical lattice clock for quantum simulation. University of Birmingham. M.Phil.

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Strontium optical lattice clocks represent the current state of the art in precise measurement of time. By trapping atoms at the antinodes of a one dimensional interference pattern of light, frequency shifts associated with the absorption and re-emission of photons used to probe the narrow linewidth clock transition can be avoided. In such a periodic system atoms develop a motional bandstructure analogous to electrons in condensed matter systems. By studying the behavior of atoms in the optical lattice we can, by analogy, gain understanding into the behavior of electrons in the solid state. Indeed, we can perform experiments which cannot be done in the real bulk material by controlling parameters which are impossible to change in macroscopic solids.

In this work we report on modifications to the existing strontium optical lattice clock experiment which have allowed the study of spin-orbit coupling. By dynamically ramping the intensity of one lattice beam during an experimental cycle we can study a regime in which the inter-site hopping rate J is sufficiently large that an atoms internal state can become coupled to its quasimomentum. The design requirements of the changes and the preliminary results are discussed.

Type of Work: Thesis (Masters by Research > M.Phil.)
Award Type: Masters by Research > M.Phil.
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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