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Rydberg excitation of cesium atoms in vapor cells at room temperature

August 6, 2015 - 10:00am
Alban Urvoy
Physikalisches Institut Universität Stuttgart

Rydberg atoms in dense gases are of growing interest, due to the rich many-body physics enabled by the strong interactions. In particular, the effect of Rydberg aggregation, which relies on off-resonant excitation to spatially correlated ensembles of atoms, is currently studied [1,2] as it exhibits interesting correlations, as e.g. in soft-matter systems [3].
We present our experimental results on the excitation dynamics of such Rydberg aggregates in a vapor cell at room temperature [4]. The scaling laws for the characteristic timescale of the excitation process are consistent with a model based on an effective Master equation. Moreover, we show that our measurements are very sensitive to the interaction potentials. We are able to observe the influence dipole-quadrupole interactions.
We will also examine the definition of aggregates when thermal motion is non-negligible and the influence of having predominantly motional dephasing rather than laser dephasing.

[1] H. Schempp et al.,PRL 112, 013002 (2014)
[2] N. Malossi et al., PRL 113, 023006 (2014)
[3] I. Lesanovsky and J.P. Garrahan, PRA 90, 011603(R) (2014)
[4] A. Urvoy et al., PRL 114, 203002 (2015)

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