Quantum atom optics

Group leader : Christoph WESTBROOK
Laboratoire Charles Fabry

The team is interested in the development of analogies between “traditional” quantum optics and the manipulation of atoms by lasers. Thus, the interactions between atoms in a Bose-Einstein condensate can be interpreted very analogously to the 4-wave mixture in optics. This process can create pairs of correlated atoms and more generally compressed vacuum states. The team managed to observe the Hong or Mandel effect for atoms and is developing other protocols to highlight the entanglement between atoms using external degrees of freedom.
The experiments are carried out with metastable helium atoms a species that allows the detection by microchannels plate. With these detectors, the team can reconstruct images, atom by atom, of three-dimensional pulses. Moreover, this information can also be used to observe correlations between atoms.