Towards a strontium based stationary optical lattice clock

Ubaid, Qasim Hassan (2020). Towards a strontium based stationary optical lattice clock. University of Birmingham. Ph.D.

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Optical atomic clocks have proven to be the most stable clocks with the lowest systematic uncertainty which has now reached a record level of (9.4 X10/(^{19}/)). Thus optical clocks now surpass the best fountain Cs atomic clocks by three orders of magnitude which opens the prospect of using optical clocks as frequency standards for timekeeping in the near future.

This thesis describes the progress that has been made towards a stationary optical lattice clock based on strontium atoms, and reports the results of an ongoing characterization.

An experimental apparatus was designed and built to efficiently slow, cool, and trap the strontium atoms which represent the heart of the strontium optical lattice clock discussed in this thesis. The novel aspects of the experimental development described in the thesis comprise a frequency doubling cavity for producing 461 nm laser light employed for cooling and trapping the strontium atoms in the first stage cooling. This cavity provided sufficient power for cooling and trapping the strontium atoms for up to 300 mW of 461 nm laser light. Furthermore, a new design of Zeeman slower based on spherical permanent magnets was produced, built and characterized.

The slower is compact, tunable, easy to assemble and maintain, and cost-effective as the permanent magnets do not require any power supply or water cooling. It is suggested that this kind of Zeeman slower constitutes an ideal solution for portable optical clock systems. A blue magneto-optical trap was realized for the first time with such a Zeeman slower. With about 30 mW of a 461 nm laser, up to 6X10/(^8/) atoms were captured.

Type of Work: Thesis (Doctorates > Ph.D.)
Award Type: Doctorates > Ph.D.
Licence: All rights reserved
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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