Dana Anderson
Senior Investigator
JILA, University of Colorado Boulder (Physics & Electrical Engineering)

Integrated atom optics, chip-scale quantum sensors

At the heart of the atomtronics experiment is our window atom chip technology (shown below). By patterning wires directly over the chip window it becomes possible to produce samples of ultracold atoms extremely close to a surface with high numerical aperture optical access. Below is an example of one of our “split-wire” atom chips, which enables trapping of atoms in an H-trap such that the atoms sit in a cigar-shaped trap arbitrarily close to the window.

Neutral Atom Quantum Computing
Our quantum computing lab is in collaboration with eight institutions on developing the world’s first neutral atom quantum computer. Proposed by Richard Feynman decades ago, quantum computers are seen as a successor of contemporary computers as they can theoretically factor numbers exponentially better than a contemporary computer.

Putting Cold Atoms in Space
The Cold Atom Laboratory (CAL) is being designed to enable earth-bound researchers to carry out ultracold atom physics experiments in the micro-gravity environment of the International Space Station (ISS). Earth-bound experiments are subject to acceleration due to the Earth's gravity, and the corresponding energy shifts can be large compared with the temperature and quantum mechanical energy of ultracold atoms. Setting gravity to nearly zero allows one to carry out experiments and observations not possible with table-top experiments on Earth.

Ultracold Atom Gyroscope
The goal of this project is to demonstrate an ultracold atom gyroscope sensitive enough to detect the Earth’s rotation. To do this we trap 87Rb atoms in a cigar-shaped, high frequency magnetic trap created from an atom chip depicted below. We then cool the atoms to degeneracy and use a Sagnac interferometer geometry to perform the inertial sensing.