BEC in the KRb lab!

We have now created our first BEC on our new experimental setup. The BEC was created in a trap formed by a (macroscopic) copper Z structure that lies beneath the atom chip. The picture on the left below shows a thermal cloud after 12 ms of free expansion (i.e. 12 ms after being released from the magnetic trap). The picture on the right shows a BEC after 12 ms of free expansion. The atom chip surface can be seen at the top of both pictures. The elongated nature of the magnetic trap gives rise to the elongated shape of the BEC after expansion – the interaction energy is greater in the more tightly confined direction, which is converted into kinetic energy under expansion. There are approximately 50000 atoms in the BEC.

Picture of Thermal Cloud Picture of BEC

Posted: April 2nd, 2009, | Comments: none