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Optics Express

Optics Express

  • Editor: C. Martijn de Sterke
  • Vol. 17, Iss. 21 — Oct. 12, 2009
  • pp: 19173–19180

Analysis of Kapitza-Dirac diffraction patterns beyond the Raman-Nath regime

Bryce Gadway, Daniel Pertot, René Reimann, Martin G. Cohen, and Dominik Schneble  »View Author Affiliations

Optics Express, Vol. 17, Issue 21, pp. 19173-19180 (2009)

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We study Kapitza-Dirac diffraction of a Bose-Einstein condensate from a standing light wave for a square pulse with variable pulse length but constant pulse area. We find that for sufficiently weak pulses, the usual analytical short-pulse prediction for the Raman-Nath regime continues to hold for longer times, albeit with a reduction of the apparent modulation depth of the standing wave. We quantitatively relate this effect to the Fourier width of the pulse, and draw analogies to the Rabi dynamics of a coupled two-state system. Our findings, combined with numerical modeling for stronger pulses, are of practical interest for the calibration of optical lattices in ultracold atomic systems.

© 2009 Optical Society of America

OCIS Codes
(020.1670) Atomic and molecular physics : Coherent optical effects
(050.1940) Diffraction and gratings : Diffraction
(020.1335) Atomic and molecular physics : Atom optics
(020.1475) Atomic and molecular physics : Bose-Einstein condensates

ToC Category:
Atomic and Molecular Physics

Original Manuscript: July 27, 2009
Revised Manuscript: September 11, 2009
Manuscript Accepted: September 12, 2009
Published: October 8, 2009

Bryce Gadway, Daniel Pertot, René Reimann, Martin G. Cohen, and Dominik Schneble, "Analysis of Kapitza-Dirac diffraction patterns beyond the Raman-Nath regime," Opt. Express 17, 19173-19180 (2009)

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Fig. 1. Fig. 2. Fig. 3.

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