Efficient state transfer in an ultracold dense gas of heteronuclear molecules

S. Ospelkaus, A. Pe'er, K. K. Ni, J. J. Zirbel, B. Neyenhuis, S. Kotochigova, P. S. Julienne, J. Ye, D. S. Jin

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

259 Scopus citations

Abstract

Polar molecules have bright prospects for novel quantum gases with long-range and anisotropic interactions, and could find uses in quantum information science and in precision measurements. However, high-density clouds of ultracold polar molecules have so far not been produced. Here, we report a key step towards this goal. We start from an ultracold dense gas of loosely bound 40 K 87 Rb Feshbach molecules with typical binding energies of a few hundred kilohertz, and coherently transfer these molecules in a single transfer step into a vibrational level of the ground-state molecular potential bound by more than 10 GHz. Starting with a single initial state prepared with Feshbach association, we achieve a transfer efficiency of 84%. Given favourable Franck-Condon factors, the presented technique can be extended to access much more deeply bound vibrational levels and those exhibiting a significant dipole moment.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)622-626
Number of pages5
JournalNature Physics
Volume4
Issue number8
DOIs
StatePublished - Aug 2008
Externally publishedYes

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
We acknowledge financial support from NIST, NSF and DOE. K.-K.N. and B.N. acknowledge support from the NSF, S.O. from the Alexander-von-Humboldt Foundation and P.S.J. from the ONR. We thank D. Wang for stimulating discussions and C. Ospelkaus for critical reading of the manuscript.

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