Updates to magneto-optical trap for neutral atom quantum computing

Presenting Author: Jacob Siderman, California Polytechnic State University
Contributing Author(s): Eric Bettencourt, Jordan Churi, Anya Houk, Katharina Gillen, Glen Gillen

Several different physical systems show promise in bringing quantum computing into reality. Our goal is to identify and realize light patterns to hold atoms for neutral atom quantum computing. We hope to use a pinhole diffraction pattern [1] to trap rubidium atoms that were pre-cooled in a magneto-optical trap (MOT). Time is a limited resource for any research project, especially at an undergraduate institution where student turnover is high and training in the tuning techniques is required every year. A MOT requires precise tuning of two diode lasers to the correct hyperfine transitions. This is currently the most time-consuming task students need to perform in the lab. Our newest team is updating and streamlining this process to make transitions between groups easier while reducing the amount of time needed to tune. We identified several changes to achieve faster tuning and more consistent functioning: changes to the optical setup to improve beam shape and intensity; rewriting the code running the tuning process to improve performance and user interface; combining and streamlining tasks currently carried out with separate programs; and eventually automating more of the tuning process. With these updates, we hope to achieve an instrument that will efficiently and consistently test and analyze different light patterns as atom traps for quantum computing. [1] K. Gillen-Christandl, et al., Phys. Rev. A 83, 023408 (2011).

(Session 5 : Saturday from 5:00pm - 7:00pm)


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