Interaction of xenon Rydberg atoms near a metallic surface in an electric field
Oubre, Christopher David
Nordlander, Peter J.
Master of Science
We investigate the interaction of a xenon Rydberg atom with a metallic surface in an electric field. We also present a Stark map for xenon Rydberg atoms. The xenon Rydberg atom is modeled using a pseudopotential fitted to experimentally obtained quantum defects. We show that several xenon levels exhibit avoided crossings with the application of a DC electric field. Additional avoided crossings occur as the xenon Rydberg atom approaches a surface. These avoided crossings lead to mixing between levels of different principal quantum number n. Nonadiabatic transition through these avoided crossings can explain recent results involving ionization of state-selected xenon Rydberg atoms near a metal surface.