High-Accuracy Measure of Atomic Polarizability in an Optical Lattice Clock
Journal article preprint
MASSACHUSETTS INST OF TECH CAMBRIDGE
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Despite being a canonical example of quantum mechanical perturbation theory, as well as one of the earliest observed spectroscopic shifts, the Stark effect contributes the largest source of uncertainty in a modern optical atomic clock through blackbody radiation. By employing an ultracold, trapped atomic ensemble and high stability optical clock, we characterize the quadratic Stark effect with unprecedented precision. We report the ytterbium optical clocks sensitivity to electric fields such as blackbody radiation as the differential static polarizability of the ground and excited clock levels 36.26127 kHz kVcm-2. The clocks fractional uncertainty due to room temperature blackbody radiation is reduced an order of magnitude to 3 times 10-17.
- Quantum Theory and Relativity