Atom-surface interactions can significantly modify the intensity and phase of atom de Broglie waves diffracted by a silicon nitride grating. This affects the operation of a material grating as a coherent beam splitter. The phase shifts induced by diffraction are measured by comparing the relative phases of several interfering paths in a Mach-Zehnder Na atom interferometer formed by three material gratings. The values of the diffraction phases are consistent with a simple model which includes a van der Waals atom-surface interaction between the Na atoms and the silicon nitride grating bars.
|Original language||English (US)|
|Journal||Physical Review A - Atomic, Molecular, and Optical Physics|
|State||Published - 2006|
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Atomic and Molecular Physics, and Optics