Optical Lattices and Quantum Degenerate <sup>87</sup>Rb in Reduced Dimensions
Huckans, John Howard
Phillips, William D.
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This dissertation is about the physics of dilute gaseous Bose-Einstein condensates (BECs) confined to lower dimensions by optical lattices. The central theme of the effects of reduced dimensionality is explored within various one-dimensional (1D) and two-dimensional (2D) systems. We create a 2D BEC by adiabatically increasing the confinement of a trapping potential in one direction to the point where motion in that direction is frozen out. Doing this in two directions, we create a 1D BEC. Two experiments examine the ground state properties of a 1D and 2D system. In the 1D system (Chap. 9), a reduction in three-body recombination signals an increase in correlation resulting in a partial "fermionization" of the Bose gas. In the 2D system (Chap. 8), we measure temperature-dependent condensate phase fluctuations in the vicinity of the Berezinskii-Kosterlitz-Thouless transition. Other experiments investigate dynamic properties of reduced dimension systems. Strongly inhibited transport of a 1D gas in a lattice is observed in one experiment (Chap. 9). Another 2D experiment measures suppressed collisional decay rates due to the reduced dimensionality (Chap. 9). A final experiment (Chap. 7) examines quantum/classical correspondence in the effectively 1D dynamics of a 3D BEC. The dynamics is effectively 1D in the sense that the experiment is over before motion in the radial directions (which are not frozen out) can occur. This dissertation also describes the design and implementation of a novel 1D "accordion lattice" (Chaps. 5-6) which greatly facilitated the Berezinskii-Kosterlitz-Thouless experiment, the quantum/classical correspondence experiment, and a "superlattice" experiment conducted to assist in the calibration of the accordion lattice.