A Caltech Library Service

Enhanced molecular yield from a cryogenic buffer gas beam source via excited state chemistry

Jadbabaie, Arian and Pilgram, Nickolas H. and Klos, Jacek and Kotochigova, Svetlana and Hutzler, Nicholas R. (2020) Enhanced molecular yield from a cryogenic buffer gas beam source via excited state chemistry. New Journal of Physics, 22 (2). Art. No. 022002. ISSN 1367-2630. doi:10.1088/1367-2630/ab6eae.

[img] PDF - Published Version
Creative Commons Attribution.

[img] Image (GIF) - Supplemental Material
Creative Commons Attribution.

[img] Image (GIF) - Supplemental Material
Creative Commons Attribution.

[img] Image (GIF) - Supplemental Material
Creative Commons Attribution.

[img] Image (GIF) - Supplemental Material
Creative Commons Attribution.


Use this Persistent URL to link to this item:


We use narrow-band laser excitation of Yb atoms to substantially enhance the brightness of a cold beam of YbOH, a polyatomic molecule with high sensitivity to physics beyond the standard model (BSM). By exciting atomic Yb to the metastable ³P₁ state in a cryogenic environment, we significantly increase the chemical reaction cross-section for collisions of Yb with reactants. We characterize the dependence of the enhancement on the properties of the laser light, and study the final state distribution of the YbOH products. The resulting bright, cold YbOH beam can be used to increase the statistical sensitivity in searches for new physics utilizing YbOH, such as electron electric dipole moment and nuclear magnetic quadrupole moment experiments. We also perform new quantum chemical calculations that confirm the enhanced reactivity observed in our experiment and compare reaction pathways of Yb(³P) with the reactants H₂O and H₂O₂. More generally, our work presents a broad approach for improving experiments that use cryogenic molecular beams for laser cooling and precision measurement searches of BSM physics.

Item Type:Article
Related URLs:
URLURL TypeDescription
Jadbabaie, Arian0000-0002-7606-5586
Pilgram, Nickolas H.0000-0002-5467-3783
Hutzler, Nicholas R.0000-0002-5203-3635
Additional Information:©2020 The Author(s). Published by IOP Publishing Ltd on behalf of the Institute of Physics and Deutsche Physikalische Gesellschaft. Original content from this work may be used under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 licence. Any further distribution of this work must maintain attribution to the author(s) and the title of the work, journal citation and DOI. Received 24 October 2019. Accepted 22 January 2020. Accepted Manuscript online 22 January 2020. Published 19 February 2020. We thank the PolyEDM collaboration for insightful discussions, especially Amar Vutha, Tim Steimle, John Doyle, and the Doyle Group at Harvard. We also thank Tim Steimle for providing the lines used for spectroscopy of YbOH, Avikar Periwal for his assistance fabricating the CBGB source, Yi Zeng for assistance with the lasers, and Elizabeth West, Xiaomei Zeng, and Katherine Faber for assistance with fabricating the ablation targets. AJ thanks Ashay Patel for helpful discussions. Work at Caltech is supported by the Heising-Simons Foundation through grant #2019-1193, the NSF CAREER Award #PHY-1847550, and NIST Precision Measurement Grant #60NANB18D253. Work at Temple University is supported by the Army Research Office Grant #W911NF-17-1-0563, the U.S. Air Force Office of Scientific Research Grant #FA9550-14-1-0321 and the NSF Grant #PHY-1908634.
Funding AgencyGrant Number
Heising-Simons Foundation2019-1193
National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST)60NANB18D253
Army Research Office (ARO)W911NF-17-1-0563
Air Force Office of Scientific Research (AFOSR)FA9550-14-1-0321
Subject Keywords:excited state chemistry, cold molecules, cryogenic buffer gas beams, polyatomic molecules, precision measurement, reactive collisions, photochemistry
Issue or Number:2
Record Number:CaltechAUTHORS:20200219-114917969
Persistent URL:
Official Citation:Arian Jadbabaie et al 2020 New J. Phys. 22 022002
Usage Policy:No commercial reproduction, distribution, display or performance rights in this work are provided.
ID Code:101381
Deposited By: George Porter
Deposited On:19 Feb 2020 20:05
Last Modified:12 Jul 2022 19:45

Repository Staff Only: item control page