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Contact: Ben Stein
ben.stein@nist.gov
301-975-3097
National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST)

Atomic Matchmaking

Caption: In the sequence of green arrows, a pair of ultracold gas atoms collides, briefly forms a molecule, and flies apart, in the presence of an external magnetic field (not shown) that influences this process. By adding RF radiation (lightning bolts) of the right frequency, the atoms can experience being in many different molecular states (red arrows), providing even more extensive and detailed control of the collision. The size of the yellow bursts indicate the amount of absorption/emission of RF radiation.

Credit: Eite Tiesinga, NIST/JQI

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Related news release: NIST physicists turn to radio dial for finer atomic matchmaking


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