Subscribe free to our newsletters via your
. 24/7 Space News .




TECH SPACE
JILA's quantum crystal is now more valuable
by Staff Writers
Boulder CO (SPX) Nov 15, 2015


Scientists create JILA's quantum crystal by precisely overlapping two dense gases of ultracold potassium and rubidium atoms (left) to produce molecules that form an interconnected system (right), in which "spin" properties can migrate between molecules. The crystal could lead to development of new materials. Image courtesy Steven Burrows and Ye/Jin groups/JILA. For a larger version of this image please go here.

Physicists at JILA have made their "quantum crystal" of ultracold molecules more valuable than ever by packing about five times more molecules into it. The denser crystal will help scientists unlock the secrets of magnets and other, more exotic materials.

The crystal is actually a gas of particles trapped in 3-D formation by laser beams. The trap, called an optical lattice, has wells - local regions of low energy - like an egg carton made of light. The researchers maneuvered a single molecule into each well, successfully filling about 25 percent of the crystal. The structure has an advantage over a real crystal, as it is made of scientifically interesting molecules that normally would not crystallize.

Described in the Nov. 6, 2015, issue of Science,* the JILA crystal is useful for studying correlations among the molecules' "spins," or rotations, a quantum behavior related to magnetism. The denser crystal will enable scientists to study and model complex effects such as how spin correlations or entanglement - a quantum link between the properties of separated particles - spread through a large system. Scientists might use these effects, for example, to make novel materials for electronics or other applications.

JILA is operated jointly by the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) and the University of Colorado Boulder.

"The density in the crystal is now high enough to introduce long-range order, so the molecules behave as an interconnected system instead of just a collection of isolated particles," JILA/NIST Fellow Jun Ye says. "The molecules are close enough to each other for their spins to migrate and relocate to other molecules, allowing us to investigate quantum connections of many particles that may lead to new materials."

Each molecule consists of one potassium atom bonded to one rubidium atom. The molecules are polar, with a positive electric charge on rubidium and a negative charge on potassium. This feature means the molecules can be controlled with electric fields and can interact strongly, even when far apart.

"Because our molecules are polar, neighboring molecules in the lattice will interact with each other," JILA/NIST Fellow Deborah Jin says. "When each molecule has multiple neighbors to talk to, these interactions become much more important and affect the entire crystal."

Building the quantum crystal was something of a tour de force in atomic manipulation. While researchers can create a crystal from one atomic gas relatively easily, combining two different atomic gases was difficult. But this was necessary to arrange for the two different atoms to form a molecule. The recipe required a small cloud of rubidium atoms, a class of particles that like to act in unison, and a large cloud of potassium atoms, which tend to be more independent.

The JILA team loaded the optical lattice by overlapping the two clouds to match their densities and energy levels in the intersection so that one of each type of atom tended to accumulate in each well. Researchers then used magnetic fields and lasers to fuse the atom pairs into molecules with the lowest possible vibrational and rotational energy. Remaining stray atoms were flushed out of the trap.

S.A. Moses, J.P. Covey, M.T. Miecnikowski, B. Yan, B. Gadway, J. Ye and D.S. Jin. Creation of a low-entropy quantum gas of polar molecules in an optical lattice. Science. Nov. 6.

Thanks for being here;
We need your help. The SpaceDaily news network continues to grow but revenues have never been harder to maintain.

With the rise of Ad Blockers, and Facebook - our traditional revenue sources via quality network advertising continues to decline. And unlike so many other news sites, we don't have a paywall - with those annoying usernames and passwords.

Our news coverage takes time and effort to publish 365 days a year.

If you find our news sites informative and useful then please consider becoming a regular supporter or for now make a one off contribution.

SpaceDaily Contributor
$5 Billed Once


credit card or paypal
SpaceDaily Monthly Supporter
$5 Billed Monthly


paypal only

.


Related Links
National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST)
Space Technology News - Applications and Research






Comment on this article via your Facebook, Yahoo, AOL, Hotmail login.

Share this article via these popular social media networks
del.icio.usdel.icio.us DiggDigg RedditReddit GoogleGoogle




Memory Foam Mattress Review
Newsletters :: SpaceDaily :: SpaceWar :: TerraDaily :: Energy Daily
XML Feeds :: Space News :: Earth News :: War News :: Solar Energy News





TECH SPACE
Trampolining water droplets
Zurich, Switzerland (SPX) Nov 15, 2015
If you travel by plane in the coming months, you might witness a wintry aviation ritual in which ice and snow are cleared off the wings with a special liquid. That is necessary since tiny water droplets in the air may freeze to ice in certain weather conditions when settling on the aircraft's wings. That, in turn, can lead to turbulent airflow during take-off and hence to reduced lift - a potent ... read more


TECH SPACE
Gaia's sensors scan a lunar transit

SwRI scientists explain why moon rocks contain fewer volatiles than Earth's

All-female Russian crew starts Moon mission test

Russian moon mission would need 4 Angara-A5V launches

TECH SPACE
Curiosity Mars Rover Heads Toward Active Dunes

Upgrade Helps NASA Study Mineral Veins on Mars

Dust devils detected by seismometer could guide Mars mission

Amnesia Event Slows Down Opportunity Robotic Arm Work

TECH SPACE
XCOR develops Lynx Simulator

Orion ingenuity improves manufacturing while reducing mass

Orion's European module ready for testing

General Dynamics demos SGSS Command and Control Infrastructure for NASA

TECH SPACE
China to launch Dark Matter Satellite in mid-December

China to better integrate satellite applications with Internet

China's satellite expo opens

New rocket readies for liftoff in 2016

TECH SPACE
Cygnus Launch Poised to Bolster Station Science, Supplies

Space station power short circuits, system repairs needed

Progress cargo spacecraft to be launched Dec 21

Cygnus Starts Final Round of Processing for Station Cargo Delivery

TECH SPACE
Recycled power plant equipment bolsters ULA in its energy efficiency

Purchase of building at Ellington a key step in Houston Spaceport development plans

More launches ahead for UH's Hawaii Space Flight Laboratory

LISA Pathfinder topped off for Vega launch that will test Relativity

TECH SPACE
Rocket Scientists to Launch Planet-Finding Telescope

5400mph winds discovered hurtling around planet outside solar system

New exoplanet in our neighborhood

Asteroid ripped apart to form star's glowing ring system

TECH SPACE
Computers tackle one of chemistry's greatest challenges

Conducting gels - from waste to wealth

Lasers could rapidly make materials hotter than the Sun

ORNL device combines power of mass spectrometry, microscopy




The content herein, unless otherwise known to be public domain, are Copyright 1995-2014 - Space Media Network. All websites are published in Australia and are solely subject to Australian law and governed by Fair Use principals for news reporting and research purposes. AFP, UPI and IANS news wire stories are copyright Agence France-Presse, United Press International and Indo-Asia News Service. ESA news reports are copyright European Space Agency. All NASA sourced material is public domain. Additional copyrights may apply in whole or part to other bona fide parties. Advertising does not imply endorsement, agreement or approval of any opinions, statements or information provided by Space Media Network on any Web page published or hosted by Space Media Network. Privacy Statement All images and articles appearing on Space Media Network have been edited or digitally altered in some way. Any requests to remove copyright material will be acted upon in a timely and appropriate manner. Any attempt to extort money from Space Media Network will be ignored and reported to Australian Law Enforcement Agencies as a potential case of financial fraud involving the use of a telephonic carriage device or postal service.