Atom optics and shaped light
Images, and in particular quantum images, provide a highly efficient method to store information. Conventionally we use only brightness and colour, but additional (invisible) structure can also be encoded into the phase and polarisation of a light field. We are interested in the storage and manipulation of such images by interaction with atoms. Our main experiment is based on a magneto-optical trap which contains high-density rubidium atoms at some 100 micro Kelvin, but we also use atomic gasses at room temperature or above.
We rely on state-of-the-art technologies to generate and measure shaped light and are actively developing various methods based on spatial light modulators, interferometers and conical reflection.
PhD and postdoc positions: We are always happy to discuss research proposals that interest you and that would fit in with our activities. Please contact Sonja Franke-Arnold for further details.
Atoms are ideal sensors for the full vectorial light field, including its amplitude, phase and polarisation. Our experiments are performed in a high density holographic SpOT trap, and we have recently generated spatially dependent EIT, controlled by the phase profile of the probe light.
We study the propagation of structured light through atomic rubidium vapour. Atomic scattering allows us to visualise 3D light structures, and nonlinear light matter interaction allows us to transfer spatial information between light at different frequencies.
We are using and developing techniques that can generate light beams with arbitrary phase and amplitude profiles, and more recently also spatially varying polarisation patterns. We have recently demonstrated polarisation vortices encoded in white light.
For a full list of publications, see the Enlighten pages of Sonja Franke-Arnold and Neal Radwell.