We aim to widen the range of quantum simulations with cold atoms investigating phenomena arising from the long-ranged dipolar interaction in reduced dimensionalities. We are designing and assembling a new apparatus for the production and manipulation of quantum gases of highly magnetic Dysprosium atoms. This is a joint project of LENS and INO-CNR.

We observed the transition to BEC for 162Dy atoms!
Our dipolar BECs are made up at the moment by up to 3⨯104 atoms. Atoms from the MOT are transferred into an in-vacuum optical resonator where we perform a first evaporation down to a few μK. Afterwards, we load the atoms in a crossed optical trap and condensation temperature is reached by evaporation ramps. The atomic dipoles are aligned along the vertical direction by an uniform magnetic field of a few Gauss and the vertical trapping frequency is higher than the horizontal ones to prevent dipolar collapse. The transition temperature for our trapping potential is below 100 nK.

We realize a magneto-optical trap for 162Dy atoms on the intermediate linewidth transition at 626 nm. We trap over 2✕108 atoms at temperatures as low as 20 μK in 5 seconds. We observe the best loading at large detuning, -35Γ. Under these operating conditions, MOT forms below the quadrupole centre and the MOT light acts as optical pumping as well.

E. Lucioni et al.
A new setup for experiments with ultracold Dysprosium atoms
Eur. Phys. J. Spec. Top. 226, 2775 (2017)

We finished assembling the vacuum setup. In the final cell, we included a passive high finesse optical resonator to transfer a large volume of atoms from the MOT to an optical trap that requires low power.

Light at 421nm will be employed for transverse cooling and for the Zeeman slower. Up to 1.2W of blue light is produced in a homemade frequency doubling cavity and is locked to the atomic line using saturated absorption spectroscopy in a hollow cathode lamp.

Light at 626nm will be employed for the magneto-optical trap (MOT). The red light is obtained from a commercial laser system and is locked to the atomic line using saturated absorption spectroscopy in a iodine cell.

Dy People

Alessandro Fregosi
Master student
Luca Tanzi
Research fellow
Jacopo Catani
Permanent researcher
Massimo Inguscio
Permanent researcher
Giovanni Modugno
Permanent researcher
Andrea Fioretti
Permanent researcher
Carlo Gabbanini
Permanent researcher
Silvia Gozzini
Permanent researcher
Eleonora Lucioni
Research fellow

Dy contacts

For further information, request of material, job opportunities, please contact:

Eleonora Lucioni
(lucioni@lens.unifi.it)