Publications (2)0 Total impact
ABSTRACT: We discuss a velocity selection technique for obtaining cold atoms, in which all atoms below a certain energy are spatially selected from the surrounding atom cloud. Velocity selection can in some cases be more efficient than other cooling techniques for the preparation of ultracold atom clouds in one dimension. With quantum mechanical and classical simulations and theory we present a scheme using a dipole force barrier to select the coldest atoms from a magnetically trapped atom cloud. The dipole and magnetic potentials create a local minimum which traps the coldest atoms. A unique advantage of this technique is the sharp cut-off in the velocity distribution of the sample of selected atoms. Such a non-thermal distribution should prove useful for a variety of experiments, including proposed studies of atomic tunneling and scattering from quantum potentials. We show that when the rms size of the atom cloud is smaller than the local minimum in which the selected atoms are trapped, the velocity selection technique can be more efficient in 1-D than some common techniques such as evaporative cooling. For example, one simulation shows nearly 6% of the atoms retained at a temperature 100 times lower than the starting condition. Comment: 13 pages, 7 figures
ABSTRACT: We present progress towards a planned experiment on atomic tunneling of ultra-cold Rb atoms. As a first step in this experiment we present a realization of an improved form of "delta-kick cooling." By application of a pulsed magnetic field, laser cooled Rb atoms are further cooled by a factor of 10 (in 1-D) over the temperature out of molasses. Temperatures below 700 nK are observed. The technique can be used not only to cool without fundamental limit (but conserving phase-space density), but also to focus atoms, and as a spin-dependent probe.