Strongly interacting quantum mixtures of ultracold atoms
Author(s)Wu, Cheng-Hsun, Ph. D. Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Department of Physics.
Martin W. Zwierlein.
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This thesis describes the construction of a new apparatus for ultracold quantum gases as well as the scientific results this machine has produced so far. This new apparatus is capable of simultaneously cooling and trapping lithium, sodium, and potassium. It therefore provides a platform to study a large variety of quantum mixtures. Three main experimental results are presented. Firstly, the direct cooling of "K to Bose-Einstein condensation is presented. Then the 41K atoms provide the coolant for 6Li and 40K, achieving a triply degenerate gas of 6Li -40K -41K. In particular, a broad interspecies Feshbach resonance between 40K -41K is observed, opening a new pathway to study a strongly interacting isotopic Bose-Fermi mixture of 40K -41K. Secondly, a new Bose-Fermi mixture of 23Na -40K is introduced. We show that 23Na is a very efficient coolant for 40K by sympathetically cooling 40K to quantum degeneracy with the help of a 23Na condensate. Moreover, over thirty interspecies Feshbach resonances are identified, paving the way to study strongly interacting Bose- Fermi problems, in particular the Bose polaron problem. Thirdly, we report on the first formation of ultracold fermionic Feshbach molecules of 23Na40K by radio-frequency association. The lifetime of the nearly degenerate molecular gas exceeds 100 ms in the vicinity of the Feshbach resonance. The NaK molecule features chemical stability in its ground state in contrast to the case of the KRb molecule. Therefore, our work opens up the prospect of creating chemically stable, fermionic ground state molecules of 23Na40K where strong, long-range dipolar interactions will set the dominant energy scale. Finally, the thesis concludes with an outlook on future topics in polaron physics and quantum dipolar gases, which can be studied using the new apparatus.
Thesis (Ph. D.)--Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Dept. of Physics, 2013.Cataloged from PDF version of thesis.Includes bibliographical references (pages 198-202).
DepartmentMassachusetts Institute of Technology. Department of Physics.
Massachusetts Institute of Technology