Comprehensive Control of Atomic Motion

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Science  12 Jun 2009:
Vol. 324, Issue 5933, pp. 1403-1406
DOI: 10.1126/science.1171506

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Recent work provides a general two-step solution to trapping and cooling of atoms. The first step is magnetic stopping of paramagnetic atoms with the use of a sequence of pulsed fields. The second step is single-photon cooling, which is based on a one-way barrier. This cooling method is related intimately to the historic problem of “Maxwell’s Demon” and subsequent work by L. Szilard. Here, I discuss the connections between single-photon cooling and information entropy. I also outline future application of these methods to fundamental tests with hydrogen isotopes.

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