Tuesday, March 31, 2009

How is the information extracted from cold atom interferometers?

The cold atoms (thermal atoms) or a BEC sitting at the bottom of a magnetic trap is split by a laser standing wave and the wave packets are allowed to evolve in time. At the end of the interferometric cycle, the wave-packets are recombined by a recombining pulse (identical to the splitting pulse). The trap is switched off and the wave packets are allowed to expand. Then the imaging of the wave packets is done by using laser light. One of the techniques is the absorption imaging technique. In this method, a resonant light is shone on the wave packets and the images obtained from this are fitted with some suitable known models. The useful information is then extracted by interpreting the fitting parameters.

Note: This post is in progress !