We investigate the optical detection of single atoms held in a microscopic atom trap close to a surface. Laser light is guided by optical fibers or optical microstructures via the atom to a photodetector. Our results suggest that with present-day technology microcavities can be built around the atom with sufficiently high finesse to permit unambiguous detection of a single atom in the trap with [Formula Presented] of integration. We compare resonant and nonresonant detection schemes and discuss the requirements for detecting an atom without causing it to undergo spontaneous emission.
|Number of pages||9|
|Journal||Physical Review A - Atomic, Molecular, and Optical Physics|
|State||Published - 2003|