- Conference date: 19-22 March, 2007
- Location: Gaithersburg, Maryland (USA)
We describe the optical diagnostics used to study ultracold neutral plasmas. Imaging and spectroscopy based on both ion absorption and fluorescence provide accurate measurements of ion kinetic energy, plasma size, and the number of ions in the plasma. Absorption measurements yield lower signal‐to‐noise ratios because they are highly sensitive to laser intensity fluctuations, but the resulting measurement of the number of ions requires no external calibration. Fluorescence measurements of ion number must be calibrated with absorption measurements, but the measurements are less sensitive to technical noise sources. Spatially resolved fluorescence measurements also have the advantage of separating ion kinetic energy due to expansion from thermal kinetic energy.
- Absorption spectroscopy
- Plasma diagnostics
- Fluorescence spectra
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