This thesis investigates different aspects of strongly interacting ultracold Rydberg gases coupled by light, including the excitation of correlated structures called Rydberg aggregates and dipolar energy transport. For this purpose an experimental apparatus has been constructed. We study coherent population trapping (CPT) and electromagnetically induced transparency (EIT) involving Rydberg states. To study the formation of Rydberg aggregates we use full counting statistics (FCS) which makes it possible to infer the size of Rydberg aggregates. Dephasing during the excitation is found to have a dramatic effect on the formation process, leading to sequential growth around an initial grain. Rydberg state EIT is used to realize a new direct optical imaging scheme for Rydberg atoms which combines highly sensitive detection with high spatial and temporal resolution. Applying this technique we observe dipole-mediated energy transport processes between Rydberg atoms. We study classical transport in the presence of strong measurement induced decoherence. The strong interactions are seen to mediate long-range hopping significantly beyond nearest neighbors. We present first indications for coherent transport in this system. These experiments shed light on the role of correlations in the excitation and evolution of strongly interacting quantum systems and e.g. could possibly be used to model energy transport in biological systems.
|Supervisor:||Weidemüller, Prof. Dr. Matthias|
|Date of thesis defense:||23 July 2014|
|Date Deposited:||04 Aug 2014 09:35|
|Faculties / Institutes:||The Faculty of Physics and Astronomy > Institute of Physics|
|Subjects:||500 Natural sciences and mathematics