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Molecular Bose-Einstein Condensate at Swinburne

Hannaford graph

The Molecular BEC team in the ARC Centre of Excellence for Quantum-Atom Optics (ACQAO) at Swinburne University have realised a molecular Bose-Einstein condensate (MBEC) of bosonic 6Li2 molecules formed from fermionic 6Li atoms, as well as a degenerate Fermi gas of 6Li atoms. The molecular BEC was achieved in an crossed optical dipole trap on the low magnetic field side (770 G) of a magnetically tunable Feshbach resonance (centred at 834 G), where the atoms form molecules, and the degenerate Fermi gas of 6Li atoms was achieved on the high magnetic field side (1150 G) of the Feshbach resonance.

The figure shows a sequence of absorption images as more atoms/molecules are evaporated from the optical trap. The dramatic appearance of a central non-Gaussian density peak is the signature of bosonic 6Li2 molecules undergoing the transition to a Bose-Einstein condensate.