laser atom trap

laser atom trap

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This image is part of the feature The Atom Trappers

Credit: PHILIPPE PLAILLY/SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption: Laser atom trap. Dr Christophe Salomon sitting by a laser atom trap, a device for confining a cloud of atoms. The atoms are confined by polarised laser beams and a magnetic field by the Zeeman effect. If an atom wanders away from the trap centre, one of four laser beams will interact with the atom to push it back. The atoms are confined in vertical motion by two effects. Gravity stops them rising out of the trap, and they are prevented from falling too far by a laser beam. Photographed at Ecole Normale Superieure, Paris.

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Keywords: atom trap, atomic, atomic physics research, christophe, laser, laser trap, physics, salomon

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