University of Birmingham > Talks@bham > Cold Atoms > Creating and manipulating cold molecules with intense optical fields

Creating and manipulating cold molecules with intense optical fields

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The creation of cold molecular gases and the precise control of the centre-of-mass motion of molecules by external fields have become an important new field in molecular and ultra-cold physics and in chemistry. The long residence times of trapped cold molecular gases coupled, with their reduced momentum spread, allows high resolution spectroscopy and the study of molecular interactions that are normally masked by thermal averaging at temperatures above 1 K. An important example is cold, trapped dipolar gases, which offers a route to the study of many body condensed matter physics and quantum information processing in a well-controlled system that can be tailored using external fields. In this talk I will review the development of techniques to slow and manipulate cold molecules focusing in particular on the optical Stark deceleration technique which uses the optical dipole force. I will then describe more recent work on how this force can be tailored using laser-induced alignment in strong optical fields. Finally, I will report on progress in our laboratory towards sympathetically cooling these molecules with ultra cold rare gas atoms with the aim of reaching the microKelvin temperature regime for a large range of molecular species.

This talk is part of the Cold Atoms series.

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