Conference Paper

Minimizing the required trap depth in optical lattice clocks

SYRTE, Obs. de Paris
DOI: 10.1109/FREQ.2005.1574062 Conference: Frequency Control Symposium and Exposition, 2005. Proceedings of the 2005 IEEE International
Source: IEEE Xplore


We study the trap depth requirement for the realization of an optical clock using atoms confined in a lattice. We show that site-to-site tunnelling leads to a residual sensitivity to the atom dynamics hence requiring large depths (50 to 100 Er for Sr) to avoid any frequency shift or line broadening of the atomic transition at the 10-17 - 10-18 level. Such large depths and the corresponding laser power may, however, lead to difficulties (e.g. higher order light shifts, two-photon ionization, technical difficulties) and therefore one would like to operate the clock in much shallower traps. To circumvent this problem we propose the use of an accelerated lattice. Acceleration lifts the degeneracy between adjacents potential wells which strongly inhibits tunnelling. We show that using the Earth's gravity, much shallower traps (down to 5 Er for Sr) can be used for the same accuracy goal

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