Rovibrational Cooling of Molecules by Optical Pumping

Year: 2012

Authors: Manai I., Horchani R., Lignier H., Pillet P., Comparat D., Fioretti A., Allegrini M.

Autors Affiliation: Laboratoire Aimé Cotton, CNRS, Université Paris-Sud, ENS Cachan, 11, 91405 Orsay, France;
Dipartimento di Fisica, Università di Pisa and CNISM, Largo Pontecorvo 3, 56127 Pisa, Italy

Abstract: We demonstrate rotational and vibrational cooling of cesium dimers by optical pumping techniques. We use two laser sources exciting all the populated rovibrational states, except a target state that thus behaves like a dark state where molecules pile up thanks to absorption-spontaneous emission cycles. We are able to accumulate photoassociated cold Cs-2 molecules in their absolute ground state (v = 0, J = 0) with up to 40% efficiency. Given its simplicity, the method could be extended to other molecules and molecular beams. It also opens up general perspectives in laser cooling the external degrees of freedom of molecules.


Volume: 109 (18)      Pages from: 183001  to: 183001

More Information: Laboratoire Aime Cotton is a member of Institut Francilien de Recherche sur les Atomes Froids (IFRAF) and of the LABEX PALM initiative. The exchange project between the University of Pisa and the University of Paris-Sud is acknowledged. A. F. and I. M. have been supported by the \”Triangle de la Physique\” under Contracts No. 2007-n.74T, No. 2009-035T \”GULFSTREAM,\” and No. 2010-097T-COCO2. We thank O. Dulieu and N. Bouloufa-Maafa for fruitful discussions as well as E. Dimova, L. Wang, L. Couturier, B. Le Crom, and E. Mangaud for their help with the experiment.
DOI: 10.1103/PhysRevLett.109.183001

Citations: 51
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