Thursday, February 15, 2018

Single Trapped Atom Made Visible In Science Photography Competition Winner

  David Nadlinger - University of Oxford
David Nadlinger - University of Oxford
 The Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council has released the overall first prize in their national science photography competition. This year's winner is 'Single Atom in an Ion Trap' by David Nadlinger from the University of Oxford.
 The photo shows a single positively-charged strontium atom held in between two metal electrodes surrounding it (zoom in to see the atom, a pinpoint of light). The photograph was made possible by utilizing a laser of blue-violet colour - this forced the atom to absorb and re-emit the light particles sufficiently quickly enough for an ordinary camera to capture the scene in a long exposure.
 This photo demonstrates the pristine platform for exploring and taking advantage of the unique properties of quantum physics. Laser-cooled atomic ions can serve as extremely accurate clocks and sensors, or even as building blocks for future quantum computers.

Read more about this fascinating study at: https://www.epsrc.ac.uk/newsevents/news/single-trapped-atom-captures-science-photography-competitions-top-prize/

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