PerspectiveUltracold Physics

Laser cooling of larger quantum objects

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Science  11 Sep 2020:
Vol. 369, Issue 6509, pp. 1304-1305
DOI: 10.1126/science.abd1657

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Summary

Surfers have a concept they call progression. It is roughly the idea that each successive generation of wave riders is not constrained by the same idea of what is “impossible.” Progression often comes in small steps, usually helped by improvements in technology but every so often—like Laird Hamilton's Millennium Wave at Teahupoo, Tahiti (1)—it comes in a giant leap when somebody does what everyone else was too scared to try. On page 1366 of this issue, Mitra et al. (2) have progressed molecular physics in a step that was unthinkable only a few years ago by laser-cooling a nonlinear polyatomic molecule, CaOCH3.

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