laser atom trap

laser atom trap

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This image is part of the feature The Atom Trappers


Caption: Laser atom trap. An atom trap is a device for confining a cloud of atoms, represented here by the red glow. The atoms are confined by polarised laser beams and a magnetic field by the Zeeman effect. If an atom wanders away from the 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 reflecting inside the prism. Photographed in the laboratory of Claude Cohen-Tannoudji and Christophe Salomon at the Ecole Normale Superieure, Paris.

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

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