Mark Kasevich, Yale University
Atom Interferometers as Inertial Force Sensors
Physics Division Colloquium - 25 Feb 2000

Atom interferometer inertial force sensors offer the prospect of unprecedented performance for rotation, acceleration and gravity gradient measurements. Applications range from inertial navigation and oil/mineral exploration, to tests of General Relativity and measurements of G. Our current generation of laboratory instruments, which I will describe in this talk, now perform at levels which compete favorably with state-of-the-art sensors. The recent observation of Bose-Einstein condensation in dilute alkali vapors opens new possibilities for atom interference measurements through exploitation of the high brightness and novel coherence properties of Bose-Einstein condensed sources. For example, I will describe our recent use of a macroscopic tunnelling effect, analogous to the AC Josephson effect in superconducting electronic systems, to measure the acceleration due to gravity.

ANL Physics Division Colloquium Schedule