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Theses

Dynamique spatio-temporelle dans un piège magnéto-optique

Abstract : The aim of this thesis is to study the spatio-temporal dynamics of laser cooled atoms in a magneto-optical trap (MOT). Previous works have shown that in the multiple scattering regime, an atomic cloud can have an unstable behavior without external modulation of the system. Nevertheless, these instabilities have not yet been modeled in a satisfactory way. A new configuration of the MOT has been built up as a possible way to study instabilities in only one direction. This trap, called anisotropic MOT, is not made of laser beams with the same laser frequencies along each direction of space. It exhibits the strong couplings between the directions of the trap, with the result that it cannot be used to reduce the number of directions in which instabilities grow up. However, this study can be considered as a new step to a better 3D description of the MOT physics. In particular, it gives us a way to measure the probability that a scattered photon is reabsorbed inside the atomic cloud. This quantity is a characteristic of the MOT but it has never been measured so far. We also develop a 1D spatio-temporal model of the MOT. It consists in a set of coupled nonlinear equations linking the atomic density and the laser intensities. This set contains a Vlasov-Fokker-Planck equation which is used to model a lot of systems in various fields and not only in physics. Numerical simulations have been done in a simple case. In the experiment, the use of a fast video camera allows us to observe the spatial structure of one type of instabilities, the so-called stochastic instabilities.
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Rudy Romain. Dynamique spatio-temporelle dans un piège magnéto-optique. Physique [physics]. Université de Lille1, 2013. Français. ⟨tel-01074802⟩

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