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Proceedings Paper • Open Access • new

Quantum harmonic oscillator fluorescence

Paper Abstract

Although the Quantum Harmonic Oscillator (QHO) is examined with differing levels of rigor in physics and quantum optics, experiments exploring the QHO have not found broad use in classroom demonstration or laboratory instruction. We present a QHO exercise that is rock solid, inexpensive and easily implemented. The QHO system studied is the sulfur anion (S2)-, an activator found in over a dozen minerals worldwide. A violet laser illuminates the sample immersed in liquid nitrogen and spectra containing lines evenly spaced in energy are collected. The energy spacing and effective spring constant for the electronic ground state QHO levels are determined. A close examination of the energy difference between consecutive levels reveals anharmonicity in the ground state potential.

Paper Details

Date Published: 2 July 2019
PDF: 8 pages
Proc. SPIE 11143, Fifteenth Conference on Education and Training in Optics and Photonics: ETOP 2019, 111430U (2 July 2019); doi: 10.1117/12.2523597
Show Author Affiliations
Daniel M. Boye, Davidson College (United States)
Laurence Cain, Davidson College (United States)
Mario Belloni, Davidson College (United States)
Sarah Friedensen, Davidson College (United States)
Nancy Pruett, Davidson College (United States)
Henry Brooks, Davidson College (United States)


Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 11143:
Fifteenth Conference on Education and Training in Optics and Photonics: ETOP 2019
Anne-Sophie Poulin-Girard; Joseph A. Shaw, Editor(s)

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