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Electrostatic trapping of metastable NH molecules

MPS-Authors
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Hoekstra,  Steven
Molecular Physics, Fritz Haber Institute, Max Planck Society;

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Metsälä,  Markus
Molecular Physics, Fritz Haber Institute, Max Planck Society;

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Zieger,  Peter C.
Molecular Physics, Fritz Haber Institute, Max Planck Society;

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Scharfenberg,  Ludwig
Molecular Physics, Fritz Haber Institute, Max Planck Society;

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Gilijamse,  Joop Jelte
Molecular Physics, Fritz Haber Institute, Max Planck Society;

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Meijer,  Gerard
Molecular Physics, Fritz Haber Institute, Max Planck Society;

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Meerakker,  Sebastiaan Y. T. van de
Molecular Physics, Fritz Haber Institute, Max Planck Society;

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321726.pdf(Hoekstra).pdf
(Preprint), 617KB

321726.pdf
(Preprint), 452KB

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Citation

Hoekstra, S., Metsälä, M., Zieger, P. C., Scharfenberg, L., Gilijamse, J. J., Meijer, G., et al. (2007). Electrostatic trapping of metastable NH molecules. Physical Review A, 76(6): 063408. doi:10.1103/PhysRevA.76.063408.


Cite as: http://hdl.handle.net/11858/00-001M-0000-0010-FF35-5
Abstract
We report on the Stark deceleration and electrostatic trapping of ¹⁴NH (a¹Δ) radicals. In the trap, the molecules are excited on the spin-forbidden A³∏ <- a¹Δ transition and detected via their subsequent fluorescence to the X³∑⁻ ground state. The 1/e trapping time is 1.4 ± 0.1 s, from which a lower limit of 2.7 s for the radiative lifetime of the a¹Δ, v=0, ,J=2 state is deduced. The spectral profile of the molecules in the trapping field is measured to probe their spatial distribution. Electrostatic trapping of metastable NH followed by optical pumping of the trapped molecules to the electronic ground state is an important step towards accumulation of these radicals in a magnetic trap.