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Persistence of a Non-Equilibrium state: Observation of a Boltzmannian Special Case

Event Details

Event Dates: 

Friday, January 23, 2015 - 4:00pm

Seminar Location: 

  • JILA X317

Speaker Name(s): 

Dan Lobser
Seminar Type/Subject

Scientific Seminar Type: 

  • JILA Public Seminar

Event Details & Abstract: 

Ludwig Boltzmann discovered a number of special cases for his transport equation, which yield bizarre results. Still intriguing today is the existence of such special cases in which time-varying distributions of atoms resist the imperative of equilibration, even in the presence of collisions. One case in  articular is manifested by the absence of damping of the monopole "breathe" mode of a gas confined to a perfectly isotropic harmonic potential. While other experiments have investigated the highly suppressed damping of the monopole mode in reduced dimensions [1,2], the difficulty in generating a  pherical harmonic potential has so far prevented the experimental realization of this system in 3D. We have developed a new magnetic trap that is capable of producing near-spherical harmonic confinement, and present the first observation of this historically significant oddity using an ultracold gas of 87-Rb atoms.

[1] T. Kinoshita, T. Wenger, and D. S. Weiss, Nature 440, 900 (2006).

[2] F. Chevy, V. Bretin, P. Rosenbusch, K. Madison, and J. Dalibard, Physical Review Letters 88, 250402 (2002).