Quantum vacuum – single ion interaction
The interaction of atoms and light plays a pivoting role in the study of Quantum Optics. My project focuses on the physical interplay between the light field and atomic excited states, aiming to control the spontaneous relaxation of the electron to the ground state. By manipulating the quantum vacuum field, the project aims to achieve an unprecedented level of suppression of the spontaneous emission of an atomic optical transition. The suppression will be realized by combining the precise control of a single trapped ion and a high-numerical aperture mirror. The ion will be positioned in the geometric center of a hemispherical mirror, which will modulate the spontaneous emission rate by reflecting the ion fluorescence back on the emitter. A successful outcome will pave the way for future research applications ranging from precision spectroscopy to control of internal levels in atoms and molecules.
Giovanni Cerchiari is staying on at the University of Innsbruck for another two years following his ESQ Fellowship.