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Journal of the Optical Society of America B

Journal of the Optical Society of America B

| OPTICAL PHYSICS

  • Vol. 6, Iss. 11 — Nov. 1, 1989
  • pp: 2046–2057

Limit of Doppler cooling

Y. Castin, H. Wallis, and J. Dalibard  »View Author Affiliations


JOSA B, Vol. 6, Issue 11, pp. 2046-2057 (1989)
http://dx.doi.org/10.1364/JOSAB.6.002046


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Abstract

We present a quantum theory of one-dimensional laser cooling of free atoms using a transition with a J = 0 ground state and a J = 1 excited state. This treatment is valid both for broad lines (recoil energy small compared with the energy width ħΓ of the excited level) and for narrow lines. For broad lines we recover the well-known cooling limit for a two-level transition (˜ħΓ/2), whereas for a narrow line the cooling limit is found to be of the order of the recoil energy. The stationary momentum distribution is obtained for both cases and is found to be close to the one obtained by Monte Carlo simulations.

© 1989 Optical Society of America

Citation
Y. Castin, H. Wallis, and J. Dalibard, "Limit of Doppler cooling," J. Opt. Soc. Am. B 6, 2046-2057 (1989)
http://www.opticsinfobase.org/josab/abstract.cfm?URI=josab-6-11-2046


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References

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  18. This result is apparently in contradiction to the limit derived in Ref. 16. Actually, this limit was obtained by an energy balance in a single absorption–spontaneous-emission cycle, without any reference to the excitation rate. The argument is therefore valid only if the excitation rate is nearly constant with respect to atomic velocity. This condition is violated for the cooling with a broadband laser of Ref. 17, in which the excitation rate for an atom at rest is much smaller than for an atom with a velocity larger than ħk/m.
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  20. One could be tempted to obtain this result with a simple reasoning dealing only with energy balance in a single-absorption–spontaneous-emission cycle. In such reasoning the probability of absorption r± of one σ± photon is obtained from r± = γ±/(γ+γ−). One would therefore start from <p(r − r+)> = 7ħk/10 instead of Eq. (4.5) and would obtain after a similar algebra Ēk = (Ēk)cl + 147 Er/400 instead of expression (4.17). The error in such simple reasoning lies in the fact that one would neglect the variation with velocity of the time interval between successive cycles. Taking this variation into account correctly enhances the contribution to <p2> of low-velocity atoms and gives back the correct result [expression (4.17)].

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