E1: Rubidium-87 BEC Experiment
Our research concentrates on the application of ultracold bosons to questions relevant to condensed matter. The systems we are studying include spinor condensates and periodically dressed condensates. We are also interested in elucidating the fundamental optical properties of BECs, as in our work on nonlinear magneto-optics in a scalar BEC. A fundamental tool is the use of phase-contrast imaging to measure magnetization nondestructively and with high spatial resolution.
E2: Cold Atomic Ensembles in the Strong Coupling Regime of Cavity QED
Cavity QED to date has yielded many tantalizing results, including the creation of atom-photon entanglement, single-atom microscopy, and long-lived optical trapping of a single atom in a resonant optical cavity. Incorporating the long lived motional coherence of ultacold atoms should yeild new possibilities for physical studies and quantum control.
To implement this, we have constructed a novel mm-scale magnetic trap (pdf) to cool and tightly confine magnetically-trapped, ultracold atoms in an optical cavity. We affectionately call it the "millitrap." In practice we use these mm-scale electromagnets to form a time-orbiting potential (TOP) trap, in which we may form BECs of ~40,000 atoms.