X-Ray Quantum Optics with Nuclei
December 7th, 2017 XIANGIJN KONG Max-Planck-Institute

Recent years have witnessed the commissioning of coherent x-ray sources opening the new field of x-ray quantum optics. While not yet as advanced as its optical counterpart, the latter may enable coherent control of x-rays, with potential applications for the fields of metrology, material science, quantum information, biology and chemistry. The desirable properties of x-rays are deeper penetration, better focus, no longer limited by an inconvenient diffraction limit as for optical photons, correspondingly spatial resolution, robustness, and the large momentum transfer they may produce. A peculiar circumstance is that x-rays are resonant to either inner shell electron transitions in (highly) charged ions, or transitions in atomic nuclei.

The talk will give an introduction to techniques to use nuclear transitions to control x-ray photons. The key for such control is the use of Mössbauer transitions in solid-state targets which enable collective effects to come into play in the nuclear excitation and decay processes.

Particularly successful systems to exploit collective effects of nuclei in x-ray single-photon superradiance have proved to be thin-film planar x-ray cavities with an embedded 57 Fe nuclear layer. We show that narrow-band x-ray pulses can be mapped and stored as nuclear coherence in a thin-film planar x-ray cavity with an embedded iron layer. We also investigate two 57 Fe nuclear layers embedded in a coupled x-ray cavities system. This setup has recently allowed for the first time the observation of Rabi oscillations of an x-ray photon in the system’s temporal evolution, as well as of the splitting of the nuclear resonances in the frequency spectrum.

Seminar, December 7, 2017, 16:00. ICFO’s Seminar Room

Hosted by Prof. Darrick E. Chang