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BEC observation at the Rowland Inst.

[Historical report created from GSU BEC Homepage:]

"A research group at the Rowland Institute has sent out e-mail announcing the observation of BEC on the night of Sunday, 22 June.

We understand that in the Rowland experiment, Na atoms are Zeeman slowed and loaded into a dark MOT. The atoms are then pumped into the |F MF> = |1 -1> state, and evaporatively cooled in a trap of the Ioffe configuration. Imaging of the cooled cloud is accomplished by releasing the trap and obtaining absorption images of the ballistically expanded cloud, for times up to 50 ms after the release of the trap. These images reveal the anisotropic velocity distribution characteristic of BEC. About 106 atoms are present in the condensate.

Update [May 1998]: The leader of the research group, Dr. Lene Hau, gave a progress report at the July 1997 ICPEAC meeting, at several seminars in the autumn of 1997, and at the 1998 DAMOP meeting. Several preprints of the group's work are now listed on the BEC online bibliography - search on the character string Hau."