Creation of Ultracold Sr-2 Molecules in the Electronic Ground State

Institut für Quantenoptik und Quanteninformation (IQOQI), Österreichische Akademie der Wissenschaften, 6020 Innsbruck, Austria.
Physical Review Letters (Impact Factor: 7.51). 09/2012; 109(11):115302. DOI: 10.1103/PhysRevLett.109.115302


We report on the creation of ultracold Sr-84(2) molecules in the electronic ground state. The molecules are formed from atom pairs on sites of an optical lattice using stimulated Raman adiabatic passage (STIRAP). We achieve a transfer efficiency of 30% and obtain 4 X 10(4) molecules with full control over the external and internal quantum state. STIRAP is performed near the narrow S-1(0)-P-3(1) intercombination transition, using a vibrational level of the 1(0(u)(+)) potential as an intermediate state. In preparation of our molecule association scheme, we have determined the binding energies of the last vibrational levels of the 1(0(u)(+)), 1(1(u)) excited-state and the X 1 Sigma(+)(g) ground-state potentials. Our work overcomes the previous limitation of STIRAP schemes to systems with magnetic Feshbach resonances, thereby establishing a route that is applicable to many systems beyond alkali-metal dimers.

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