Absolute and ratio measurements of the polarizability of Na, K, and Rb with an atom interferometer

William F. Holmgren, Melissa C. Revelle, Vincent P.A. Lonij, Alexander D. Cronin

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

64 Scopus citations

Abstract

We measured the ground-state electric-dipole polarizability of sodium, potassium, and rubidium using a Mach-Zehnder atom interferometer with an electric-field gradient. We find αNa=24.11(2)stat(18)sys×10 -24cm3, αK=43.06(14)(33), and αRb=47.24(12)(42). Since these measurements were all performed in the same apparatus and subject to the same systematic errors, we can present polarizability ratios with 0.3% uncertainty. We find αRb/αNa=1.959(5), αK/αNa=1.786(6), and αRb/αK=1.097(5). We combine our ratio measurements with the higher-precision measurement of sodium polarizability by Ekstrom [Phys. Rev. APLRAAN1050-294710.1103/PhysRevA.51.3883 51, 3883 (1995)] to find αK=43.06(21) and αRb=47.24(21).

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number053607
JournalPhysical Review A - Atomic, Molecular, and Optical Physics
Volume81
Issue number5
DOIs
StatePublished - May 10 2010

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Atomic and Molecular Physics, and Optics

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