N.J. van Druten
H.B. van Linden van den Heuvell
- Adsorbate dynamics on a silica-coated gold surface measured by Rydberg Stark spectroscopy
- Journal of Physics. B, Atomic, Molecular and Optical Physics
- Volume | Issue number
- 49 | 9
- Article number
- Number of pages
- Document type
- Faculty of Science (FNWI)
- Van der Waals-Zeeman Institute (WZI)
Institute of Physics (IoP)
Trapping a Rydberg atom close to a surface is an important step towards the realisation of many proposals for quantum information processing or hybrid quantum systems. One of the challenges in these experiments is posed by the electric field emanating from contaminations on the surface. Here we report on measurements of an electric field created by 87Rb atoms adsorbed on a 25 nm thick layer of SiO2, covering a 90 nm layer of Au. The electric field is measured using a two-photon transition to the and states. The electric field value that we measure is higher than typical values measured above metal surfaces, but is consistent with a recent measurement above a SiO2 surface. In addition, we measure the temporal behaviour of the field and observe that we can reduce it in a single experimental cycle, using ultraviolet light or by mildly locally heating the surface with one of the excitation lasers, whereas the buildup of the field takes thousands of cycles. We explain these results by a change in the adatom distribution on the surface. These results indicate that, while the stray electric field can be reduced, achieving field-free conditions above a silica-coated gold chip remains challenging.
- go to publisher's site
- In Special Issue on Rydberg Atomic Physics
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