This is an unofficial blog of the work being perform in the University of KwaZulu Natal where we are endeavoring to create Africa's first Bose-Einstein condensation experiment. Hopefully the blog will contain pictures of the main achievements and milestones of the group as they walk the long road towards a BEC.
Monday, 6 August 2012
The vacuum system consists of two separate vacuum chambers (2-D MOT and BEC chambers) separated by a differential pumping hole. This hole is large enough to allow atoms to pass from one chamber to another but is small enough to allow a differential pressure of three orders of magnitude between the two chambers. a UHV pressure of 10^-3 mbar is expected on the BEC side with a pressure of 10^-8 mbar on the 2-D MOT side (with the Rb in the chamber). the Rb is supplied using a 1 mg Rb ampule which outgases and fills the 2-D MOT chamber. an ion pump on each side will maintain the vacuum once it is achieved. a titanium sublimation pump on the BEC side can be used to decrease the pressure by an order of magnitude in case the pressure increases over time!
Vacuum system complete... but there is a leak somewhere :-(