Tuesday, January 8th: Spin coherence of atoms trapped in solid hydrogen

Event Date: 

Tuesday, January 8, 2019 - 3:45pm

Event Date Details: 

Refreshments served at 3:30pm.

Event Location: 

  • Broida 1640
  • Physics Department Colloquium

Gas-phase atoms and molecules are powerful resources for many applications: sensors, quantum simulators, and fundamental physics experiments. By trapping atoms within a solid host, one can achieve high numbers, high densities, and superb localization, but typically at a great cost: the properties of the implanted atoms are altered to an extent that they are no longer experimentally useful. Notable exceptions to this rule are NV centers in diamond, rare-earth-ion doped crystals, phosphorus donors in silicon.

We are investigating solid hydrogen as a host matrix for atoms and molecules. We have grown hydrogen crystals doped with alkali atoms, and optically controlled and detected their spin state. We have measured spin coherence by both free induction decay (T2*) and by spin echo (T2), and improved T2* times with nonclassical superposition states. The observed coherence times are competitive with the best systems in the world (at comparable electron spin densities).  Possible applications will be discussed, and audience speculation will be solicited.


Jonathan Weinstein, University of Nevada