Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

New method for quantum cooling discovered

09.08.2005


Physicists at The University of Texas at Austin have discovered a new technique for cooling atoms and molecules that will allow them to study quantum physics more effectively with a greater variety of particles.



The researchers have found a way to use lasers to form walls that allow atoms and molecules to pass through in one direction, but do not allow them to return.

The technique could lead to advances in atomic clocks, which are used to standardize time worldwide.


Dr. Mark Raizen of the Center for Nonlinear Dynamics and his colleagues describe the one-way wall technique in Physical Review Letters and Europhysics Letters published earlier this year.

Raizen and his colleagues show that atoms and molecules can first be trapped in a box whose walls are built of laser light. The box can then be separated with an optical wall constructed of two lasers. These two lasers work in concert to allow atoms and molecules to pass through to one side of the box but block them from getting back to the other side. The box then has two distinct spaces, one filled with particles and one void of particles.

Raizen’s one-way wall extends the capabilities of laser and evaporative cooling, which have been limited to cooling a small number of atoms in the periodic table. The new method is applicable to a greater diversity of atoms and molecules and can expand the capability of researchers to test laws of quantum physics at extremely low temperatures.

“In nature, the cell wall is the classic example where atoms and molecules move through a one-way barrier,” Raizen said.

Cells regulate the flow of ions through one-way channels in order to create osmotic pressure. Raizen and his colleagues illustrate it is possible to create a manmade barrier to such atomic movement.

“The beauty of the one-way atomic wall,” Raizen said, “is that there is almost no increase in kinetic energy.”

With no increase in kinetic energy comes no increase in heat. By expanding and contracting the space that holds the trapped atoms and molecules, the temperature of this space, which Raizen calls a “quantum refrigerator,” can be lowered until it reaches very close to Absolute Zero.

It’s at these ultra cold temperatures, -459 degrees Fahrenheit, that quantum physicists can manipulate atoms and molecules.

For more information contact: Lee Clippard, College of Natural Sciences, 512-232-0675.

Lee Clippard | EurekAlert!
Further information:
http://www.utexas.edu

More articles from Physics and Astronomy:

nachricht Quantum optics allows us to abandon expensive lasers in spectroscopy
22.11.2017 | Lomonosov Moscow State University

nachricht Nano-watch has steady hands
22.11.2017 | University of Vienna

All articles from Physics and Astronomy >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Nanoparticles help with malaria diagnosis – new rapid test in development

The WHO reports an estimated 429,000 malaria deaths each year. The disease mostly affects tropical and subtropical regions and in particular the African continent. The Fraunhofer Institute for Silicate Research ISC teamed up with the Fraunhofer Institute for Molecular Biology and Applied Ecology IME and the Institute of Tropical Medicine at the University of Tübingen for a new test method to detect malaria parasites in blood. The idea of the research project “NanoFRET” is to develop a highly sensitive and reliable rapid diagnostic test so that patient treatment can begin as early as possible.

Malaria is caused by parasites transmitted by mosquito bite. The most dangerous form of malaria is malaria tropica. Left untreated, it is fatal in most cases....

Im Focus: A “cosmic snake” reveals the structure of remote galaxies

The formation of stars in distant galaxies is still largely unexplored. For the first time, astron-omers at the University of Geneva have now been able to closely observe a star system six billion light-years away. In doing so, they are confirming earlier simulations made by the University of Zurich. One special effect is made possible by the multiple reflections of images that run through the cosmos like a snake.

Today, astronomers have a pretty accurate idea of how stars were formed in the recent cosmic past. But do these laws also apply to older galaxies? For around a...

Im Focus: Visual intelligence is not the same as IQ

Just because someone is smart and well-motivated doesn't mean he or she can learn the visual skills needed to excel at tasks like matching fingerprints, interpreting medical X-rays, keeping track of aircraft on radar displays or forensic face matching.

That is the implication of a new study which shows for the first time that there is a broad range of differences in people's visual ability and that these...

Im Focus: Novel Nano-CT device creates high-resolution 3D-X-rays of tiny velvet worm legs

Computer Tomography (CT) is a standard procedure in hospitals, but so far, the technology has not been suitable for imaging extremely small objects. In PNAS, a team from the Technical University of Munich (TUM) describes a Nano-CT device that creates three-dimensional x-ray images at resolutions up to 100 nanometers. The first test application: Together with colleagues from the University of Kassel and Helmholtz-Zentrum Geesthacht the researchers analyzed the locomotory system of a velvet worm.

During a CT analysis, the object under investigation is x-rayed and a detector measures the respective amount of radiation absorbed from various angles....

Im Focus: Researchers Develop Data Bus for Quantum Computer

The quantum world is fragile; error correction codes are needed to protect the information stored in a quantum object from the deteriorating effects of noise. Quantum physicists in Innsbruck have developed a protocol to pass quantum information between differently encoded building blocks of a future quantum computer, such as processors and memories. Scientists may use this protocol in the future to build a data bus for quantum computers. The researchers have published their work in the journal Nature Communications.

Future quantum computers will be able to solve problems where conventional computers fail today. We are still far away from any large-scale implementation,...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

Ecology Across Borders: International conference brings together 1,500 ecologists

15.11.2017 | Event News

Road into laboratory: Users discuss biaxial fatigue-testing for car and truck wheel

15.11.2017 | Event News

#Berlin5GWeek: The right network for Industry 4.0

30.10.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

Corporate coworking as a driver of innovation

22.11.2017 | Business and Finance

PPPL scientists deliver new high-resolution diagnostic to national laser facility

22.11.2017 | Physics and Astronomy

Quantum optics allows us to abandon expensive lasers in spectroscopy

22.11.2017 | Physics and Astronomy

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>