Hyperpolarizability and operational magic wavelength in an optical lattice clock

25 Oct 2017  ·  Brown R. C., Phillips N. B., Beloy K., McGrew W. F., Schioppo M., Fasano R. J., Milani G., Zhang X., Hinkley N., Leopardi H., Yoon T. H., Nicolodi D., Fortier T. M., Ludlow A. D. ·

Optical clocks benefit from tight atomic confinement enabling extended interrogation times as well as Doppler- and recoil-free operation. However, these benefits come at the cost of frequency shifts that, if not properly controlled, may degrade clock accuracy... Numerous theoretical studies have predicted optical lattice clock frequency shifts that scale nonlinearly with trap depth. To experimentally observe and constrain these shifts in an $^{171}$Yb optical lattice clock, we construct a lattice enhancement cavity that exaggerates the light shifts. We observe an atomic temperature that is proportional to the optical trap depth, fundamentally altering the scaling of trap-induced light shifts and simplifying their parametrization. We identify an "operational" magic wavelength where frequency shifts are insensitive to changes in trap depth. These measurements and scaling analysis constitute an essential systematic characterization for clock operation at the $10^{-18}$ level and beyond. read more

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