Microgravity Science and Technology, 2017, Vol.29(1), pp.37-48
We present the technical realization of a compact system for performing experiments with cold 87 Rb and 39 K atoms in microgravity in the future. The whole system fits into a capsule to be used in the drop tower Bremen. One of the advantages of a microgravity environment is long time evolution of atomic clouds which yields higher sensitivities in atom interferometer measurements. We give a full description of the system containing an experimental chamber with ultra-high vacuum conditions, miniaturized laser systems, a high-power thulium-doped fiber laser, the electronics and the power management. In a two-stage magneto-optical trap atoms should be cooled to the low μ K regime. The thulium-doped fiber laser will create an optical dipole trap which will allow further cooling to sub- μ K temperatures. The presented system fulfills the demanding requirements on size and power management for cold atom experiments on a microgravity platform, especially with respect to the use of an optical dipole trap. A first test in microgravity, including the creation of a cold Rb ensemble, shows the functionality of the system.
Atom interferometry ; Microgravity ; Equivalence principle ; Fundamental physics
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