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Proceedings Paper • Open Access

Introduction of advanced photonics research at the undergraduate level: an example from the Philippines
Author(s): John Waruel Liwag; Kees Karremans

Paper Abstract

Laser cooling experiments are a good example of how the interaction between light and matter can be applied to manipulate neutral atoms. At the University of San Carlos we have constructed a magneto-optical trap (MOT) for rubidium (Rb) atoms. The setup is based on the design of the MOT Wieman et al used in their efforts to reach Bose-Einstein condensation. The use of diode lasers enables the introduction of these advanced experiments at undergraduate level. Since 1998, when the MOT became operational at USC, a great number of undergraduate students have done the experiment. Not only did they learn the basics of cooling and trapping, they also gained experience in operating lasers properly, vacuum technology, and techniques for frequency stabilization. In some cases students opted to perform spectroscopy experiments on Rb atoms, which could easily be done using this setup. Of course, the presence of the MOT also gave a great boost to the research in optoelectronics, a new research direction in our department. Characterizing the MOT has resulted in several scientific papers in local physics journals as well as presentations to the annual Philippine Physics Congress. The next step is towards the realization of Bose-Einstein condensation of Rb in our Optoelectronics Laboratory.

Paper Details

Date Published: 28 May 2002
PDF: 11 pages
Proc. SPIE 4588, Seventh International Conference on Education and Training in Optics and Photonics, (28 May 2002); doi: 10.1117/12.468754
Show Author Affiliations
John Waruel Liwag, Univ. of San Carlos (Philippines)
Kees Karremans, Univ. of San Carlos (Philippines)

Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 4588:
Seventh International Conference on Education and Training in Optics and Photonics
Tuan-Kay Lim; Robert P. Breault; Arthur H. Guenther; Arthur H. Guenther, Editor(s)

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