Smoothing a current-carrying atomic mirror

L. Cognet, V. Savalli, P. D. Featonby, K. Helmerson, N. Westbrook, C. I. Westbrook, W. D. Phillips, A. Aspect, G. Zabow, M. Drndić, C. S. Lee, R. M. Westervelt, M. Prentiss

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Abstract

We have measured the magnitude and roughness of the reflecting potential produced by a current-carrying magnetic mirror from which cold rubidium atoms have been bounced at normal incidence. By varying the current in the mirror, a study of the potential barrier from which the atoms in different magnetic substates bounce has been made. A combination of time-of-flight and imaging techniques allowed us to study the roughness of the reflecting potential. We have demonstrated that the observed roughness can be reduced by additional wires to compensate for the finite-size effects, and by careful control of the direction of the magnetic bias field.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)538-544
Number of pages7
Journal Europhysics Letters
Volume47
Issue number5
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 1 Sep 1999
Externally publishedYes

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