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"Shaped laser beams and atoms in optical lattices"

Dan Heinzen
Department of Physics
The University of Texas at Austin


Atoms in optical lattices have been shown to realize the Bose-Hubbard Hamiltonian, and can in principle emulate a wide variety of quantum many body systems. I will briefly discuss results from our laboratory on the Bose-Hubbard gas, and give a brief update on the status of the field. I will also discuss a new method for shaping laser beams with a precision better than 0.3% rms, considerably better than any previous method. To do this, we use a Digital Micromirror Device (DMD) spatial light modulator to provide position-dependent attenuation of a laser beam. A number of obstacles must still be overcome before atoms in optical lattices become a generally useful emulation tool, and our new beam shaping methods could play a role in meeting these challenges.

Friday, October 26, 2012
IQSE 578, 2:00 p.m.
Mitchell Physics Building

Department of Physics and Astronomy
Texas A&M University

(Coffee and Cookies to be served at 1:45 p.m.)

Host: Alexandre Kolomenski