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Beam quality of a non-ideal atom laser

Abstract : We study the propagation of a non-interacting atom laser distorted by the strong lensing effect of the Bose-Einstein Condensate (BEC) from which it is outcoupled. We observe a transverse structure containing caustics that vary with the density within the residing BEC. Using WKB approximation, Fresnel-Kirchhoff integral formalism and ABCD matrices, we are able to describe analytically the atom laser propagation. This allows us to characterize the quality of the non-ideal atom laser beam by a generalized M$^2$ factor defined in analogy to photon lasers. Finally we measure this quality factor for different lensing effects.
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Contributor : Philippe Bouyer <>
Submitted on : Wednesday, November 30, 2005 - 2:42:57 PM
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Jean-Félix Riou, William Guerin, Yann Le Coq, Marie Fauquembergue, Philippe Bouyer, et al.. Beam quality of a non-ideal atom laser. Physical Review Letters, American Physical Society, 2006, 96, pp.070404. ⟨10.1103/PhysRevLett.96.070404⟩. ⟨hal-00008591v4⟩



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