Abstract

We present a study of adiabatic following and optical pumping effects in the process of slowing sodium atoms with the Zeeman tuning technique. By manipulating the magnetic-field profile, atoms can be decelerated to a low magnetic field, where they are decoupled from the laser beam by being optically pumped to the F = 1 ground-state sublevel. Using this method, we have produced an intense flux of slow atoms, with a well-controlled velocity of ~1010 atoms/sec.

© 1991 Optical Society of America

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