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Doppler Limit

Definition: a limit for the temperature which is achievable with certain laser cooling techniques

German: Doppler-Limit

Category: quantum optics

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The temperature achievable with Doppler cooling, a type of laser cooling, is given by the Doppler limit:

Doppler limit

where γ is the inverse upper-state lifetime, related to the natural linewidth of the atomic transition, and kB is the Boltzmann constant. Typical values for the Doppler limit are of the order of hundreds of microkelvins.

Temperatures below the Doppler limit can be reached, e.g. with Sisyphus cooling or with velocity-selective coherent population trapping. It is then possible to reach the lower recoil limit, or even lower temperatures.

See also: Doppler cooling, laser cooling, recoil limit
and other articles in the category quantum optics


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