Quantum Optics of Ultra-Cold Molecules

D. Meiser, T. Miyakawa, H. Uys, P. Meystre

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter

1 Scopus citations


Quantum optics has been a major driving force behind the rapid experimental developments that have led from the first laser cooling schemes to the Bose-Einstein condensation (BEC) of dilute atomic and molecular gases. Not only has it provided experimentalists with the necessary tools to create ultra-cold atomic systems, but it has also provided theorists with a formalism and framework to describe them: many effects now being studied in quantum-degenerate atomic and molecular systems find a very natural explanation in a quantum optics picture. This article briefly reviews three such examples that find their direct inspiration in the trailblazing work carried out over the years by Herbert Walther, one of the true giants of that field. Specifically, we use an analogy with the micromaser to analyze ultra-cold molecules in a double-well potential; study the formation and dissociation dynamics of molecules using the passage time statistics familiar from superradiance and superfluorescence studies; and show how molecules can be used to probe higher-order correlations in ultra-cold atomic gases, in particular bunching and antibunching.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationAdvances in Atomic, Molecular and Optical Physics
EditorsG. Rempe, M.O. Scully
Number of pages36
StatePublished - 2006
Externally publishedYes

Publication series

NameAdvances in Atomic, Molecular and Optical Physics
ISSN (Print)1049-250X

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Statistical and Nonlinear Physics
  • Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials


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