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Lasers and Their Application to the Observation of Bose–Einstein Condensates

Richard A Dunlap


The first part of this text provides an overview of the physics of lasers and it describes some of the more common types of lasers and their applications. The production of laser light requires the formation of a resonant cavity where stimulated emission of radiation occurs. The light produced in this way is intense, coherent and monochromatic. Applications of lasers include CD/DVD players, laser printers and fiber optic communication devices. While these devices depend largely on the monochromaticity and coherence of the light that lasers produce, other well-known applications, such as laser machining and laser fusion depend on the intensity of laser light.  

The second part of the book describes the phenomenon of Bose–Einstein condensation. These condensates represent a state of matter that exists in some dilute gases at very low temperature as predicted first by Satyendra Nath Bose and Albert Einstein. Bose–Einstein condensates were first observed experimentally in 1995 by Eric Cornell and Carl Wieman at the University of Colorado, and shortly thereafter by Wolfgang Ketterle at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. The experimental techniques used to create a Bose–Einstein condensate provide an interesting and unconventional application of lasers: the cooling and confinement of a dilute gas at very low temperature.

About Editors

Table of Contents

Part I Lasers


 Chapter 1 The basic physics of lasers

 1.1 Introduction

 1.2 Optical spectra

 1.3 Stimulated emission

 1.4 Creating a population inversion

 1.5 Laser modes and coherence


 References and suggestions for further reading


 Chapter 2 Types of lasers I: Conventional lasers

 2.1 Introduction

 2.2 Solid state lasers

 2.3 Second harmonic generation

 2.4 Gas lasers

 2.5 Dye lasers


 References and suggestions for further reading


 Chapter 3 Types of lasers II: Semiconducting lasers

 3.1 Introduction

 3.2 Semiconductor physics


 3.3 Semiconducting junctions

 3.4 LEDs and semiconductor lasers


 References and suggestions for further reading

 Chapter 4 Laser applications

 4.1 Introduction

 4.2 Communications

 4.3 Optical data discs

 4.4 Printers

 4.5 Industrial applications

 4.6 Inertial confinement fusion


 References and suggestions for further reading


Part II Bose-Einstein condensates

 Chapter 5 Fermions and bosons

 5.1 Introduction

 5.2 Fermions, bosons and the Pauli principle

 5.3 Distinguishable and indistinguishable particles and quantum states

 5.4 What is a boson and what is not a boson

 5.5 Bose-Einstein condensation


 References and suggestions for further reading


 Chapter 6 Cooling techniques

 6.1 Introduction

 6.2 Cooling techniques - The dilution refrigerator

 6.3 Cooling techniques - Adiabatic demagnetization

 6.4 Laser cooling


 6.5 Sisyphus cooling

 6.6 Magneto-optic traps

 6.7 Forced evaporative cooling


 References and suggestions for further reading


 Chapter 7 The Bose-Einstein condensate

 7.1 Introduction

 7.2 Creating and identifying a Bose-Einstein condensate

 7.3: Why is it useful?


 References and suggestions for further reading


Paperback ISBN: 9780750330053

Ebook ISBN: 9781643276953

DOI: 10.1088/2053-2571/ab2f2f

Publisher: Morgan & Claypool Publishers


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