High resolution spectroscopy of Rydberg atoms in a magnetic field

Michael M. Kash*, George R. Welch, Chun Ho Iu, Long Hsu, Daniel Kleppner

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to conferencePaperpeer-review


The behavior of Rydberg atoms in a strong magnetic field is reviewed. Experiments using a lightly collimated beam of atomic lithium that travels parallel to the magnetic field of a superconductive solenoid are reported. The atoms are excited to Rydberg states in a two-step process: a two-photon transition (735 nm) drives 2S to 3S, and a one-photon transition (614-623 nm) drives 3S to an odd-parity Rydberg state. Rydberg states are detected by static electric field ionization. The resolution is typically 30 MHz FWHM; the absolute accuracy of all observed resonances is ±60 MHz. The diamagnetic spectrum of lithium has been studied in several energy field regions. One region encompasses the n = 21 manifold in the field range of 1 to 9 T; another demonstrates the hyperbolic nature of level anticrossings of the odd-parity m = 0 levels of n = 24 and 25. The general level of agreement between theory and experiment is excellent.

Original languageEnglish
Pages190, 192
StatePublished - 1989
EventQuantum Electronics and Laser Science Conference - Baltimore, MD, USA
Duration: 24 Apr 198928 Apr 1989


ConferenceQuantum Electronics and Laser Science Conference
CityBaltimore, MD, USA


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