Analysis of a high-stability Stern-Gerlach spatial fringe interferometer

Yair Margalit, Zhifan Zhou, Shimon Machluf, Yonathan Japha, Samuel Moukouri, Ron Folman

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

11 Scopus citations

Abstract

The discovery of the Stern-Gerlach (SG) effect almost a century ago was followed by suggestions to use the effect as a basis for matter-wave interferometry. However, the coherence of splitting particles with spin by a magnetic gradient to a distance exceeding the position uncertainty in each of the arms was not demonstrated until recently, where spatial interference fringes were observed in a proof-of-principle experiment. Here we present and analyze the performance of an improved high-stability SG spatial fringe interferometer based on two spatially separate wave packets with a maximal distance that is more than an order of magnitude larger than their minimal widths. The improved performance is enabled by accurate magnetic field gradient pulses, originating from a novel atom chip configuration, which ensures high stability of the interferometer operation. We analyze the achieved stability using several models, discuss sources of noise, and detail interferometer optimization procedures.

Original languageEnglish
Article number073040
JournalNew Journal of Physics
Volume21
Issue number7
DOIs
StatePublished - 23 Jul 2019

Keywords

  • Atom chips
  • Stern Gerlach effect
  • matter-wave interferometry

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Physics and Astronomy (all)

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