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Thomas Pohl

Quantum gas microscopy of Rydberg macrodimers

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DOI

  • Simon Hollerith, Max Planck Inst Quantum Opt, Max Planck Society
  • ,
  • Johannes Zeiher, Univ Calif Berkeley, University of California Berkeley, University of California System, Dept Phys
  • ,
  • Jun Rui, Max Planck Inst Quantum Opt, Max Planck Society
  • ,
  • Antonio Rubio-Abadal, Aarhus Univ, Aarhus University, SAC, Dept Phys & Astron
  • ,
  • Valentin Walther
  • ,
  • Thomas Pohl
  • Dan M. Stamper-Kum, Univ Calif Berkeley, University of California Berkeley, University of California System, Dept Phys
  • ,
  • Immanuel Bloch, Ludwig Maximilians Univ Munchen, University of Munich, Fak Phys
  • ,
  • Christian Gross, Max Planck Inst Quantum Opt, Max Planck Society

The subnanoscale size of typical diatomic molecules hinders direct optical access to their constituents. Rydberg macrodimers-bound states of two highly excited Rydberg atoms-feature interatomic distances easily exceeding optical wavelengths. We report the direct microscopic observation and detailed characterization of such molecules in a gas of ultracold rubidium atoms in an optical lattice. The bond length of about 0.7 micrometers, comparable to the size of small bacteria, matches the diagonal distance of the lattice. By exciting pairs in the initial two-dimensional atom array, we resolved more than 50 vibrational resonances. Using our spatially resolved detection, we observed the macrodimers by correlated atom loss and demonstrated control of the molecular alignment by the choice of the vibrational state. Our results allow for rigorous testing of Rydberg interaction potentials and highlight the potential of quantum gas microscopy for molecular physics.

Original languageEnglish
JournalScience
Volume364
Issue6441
Pages (from-to)664-667
Number of pages4
ISSN0036-8075
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 17 May 2019

    Research areas

  • PHOTOASSOCIATION, MOLECULES, SPECTROSCOPY, CREATION

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