Dipole force cooling of multilevel atoms
Sackett, Charles Ackley
Hulet, Randall G.
Master of Arts
A theoretical discussion of laser cooling of multilevel atomic systems using intense, blue detuned laser beams is given. A method based on matrix continued fractions is presented, which enables the efficient calculation of the semi-classical force on a multilevel system. The method is applied to a three-level system driven by one standing wave and one travelling wave. The force curves obtained exhibit strong cooling features. Cooling of the three-level system is simulated using the fully quantum mechanical Monte Carlo wave function technique. The simulation predicts efficient cooling to sub-Doppler temperatures. The three-level model is related to a multilevel cooling experiment performed on $\sp7$Li. The experimental results are found to be in reasonable agreement with the three-level model. However, a comparison of the simulation and experiment for a two-level atomic system reveals significant discrepancies, which raises questions about the model and experiment.
Atomic physics; Optics