Learning Outcomes
The module Advanced Atomic and Molecular Physics offers lectures and extensive exercises and projects presenting the key physical concepts, the key experiments and theoretical tools of modern Atomic, Molecular and Optical Physics (AMOP) with the focus on Atomic Physics (Attosecond Physics + Advanced Atomic Physics, Track I) and links to quantum information or with the focus on Molecular Physics and links to soft and condensed matter (Attosecond Physics + Intermolecular Forces, Track II).
(Track I) Upon completion of Track I, the students will learn the following key concepts, experimental and theoretical tools:
(i) Key concepts: Entanglement, laser cooling and trapping, Bose-Einstein condensation, cold Rydberg gases and long-range many-body interaction, time and frequency standards, free electron lasers (FELs), ionization, laser-dressed atoms, optical tunnelling, tunnelling time, sub-laser-cycle dynamics, quantum trajectories, rescattering, high harmonic generation, Kramers-Henneberger atom, electron spin-polarization, circular dichroism, chirality, quantum computer.
(ii) Experimental tools: Development of precision spectroscopy with (ultra-)cold atom gases and single atoms or ions, the experimental realization of entangled atomic states in ion traps and cold Rydberg gases, time-resolved spectroscopy using novel intense short pulsed lasers, (supersonic) molecular beam, vacuum techniques, storage of charged and neutral particles, most recent laser and electron/ion spectroscopic detection techniques (frequency comb, reaction microscope).
(iii) Theoretical Tools: Multichannel quantum defect theory, autoionization and Fano theory , time-dependent quantum mechanics and wavepacket dynamics, Keldysh theory and strong-field S-matrix methods, time-dependent semi-classical methods and quantum trajectories, Kramers-Henneberger approach, methods for numerical solution of time-dependent Schrödinger equation in strong laser fields, applications of quantum chemistry methods to time-dependent molecular response including non-Hermitian quantum mechanics.
At the end of the course, the students will be able to competently apply the above theoretical tools to analyse and design the experiments aimed at imaging electron dynamics in atoms and molecules and high resolution spectroscopy.
(Track II) Upon completion of Track II , the students will learn the following key concepts, experimental and theoretical tools.
(i) Key concepts: Intermolecular interaction potential, Pauli repulsion, dispersion and van der Waals forces, hydrogen bonds, proton transfer, proton tunnelling, zero-point energy, dissociation, ionization, laser-dressed electronic states, optical tunnelling, tunnelling time, sub-laser-cycle field driven dynamics, quantum trajectories, rescattering, high harmonic generation, Kramers-Henneberger atom, spin-polarization, molecular chirality.
(ii) Experimental tools: molecular spectroscopy, scattering experiments, tools for probing intermolecular potentials, differences to chemical bonds, long-range and short-range contributions.
(iii) Theoretical tools: Methods for determination of intermolecular potentials, differences to chemical bonds, long-range and short-range contributions, classical and quantum mechanical description of intermolecular forces, time-dependent quantum mechanics, wavepacket dynamics, Keldysh theory and strong-field S-matrix methods, time-dependent semiclassical methods and quantum trajectories, Kramers-Henneberger approach, methods for numerical solution of time-dependent Schrödinger equation in strong laser fields, applications of quantum chemistry methods to time-dependent molecular response including non-Hermitian quantum mechanics.
At the end of the course, the students will be able to competently apply the above theoretical tools to analyze and design the experiments aimed at intermolecular potentials, imaging electron dynamics in atoms and molecules and high resolution spectroscopy or/and quantum information processing.
Content
SS: Attosecond Physics
Nonlinear light-matter interaction: from one-photon to multi-photon processes. Electronic response to strong low-frequency fields: optical tunnelling and the Keldysh formalism. Above threshold ionization and related phenomena. Electron motion after strong-field ionization and its consequences: high harmonic generation, laser-induced electron diffraction and holography, correlated multi-electron processes. Ionization in circularly polarized fields and generation of attosecond spin-polarized electron beams. Attoclock and the tunnelling time problem. High harmonic spectroscopy in atoms and molecules: combining sub-angstrom spatial and sub-femtosecond temporal resolution. Generation and characterization of attosecond pulses and pulse trains. Time-resolved spectroscopy of electron dynamics using attosecond pulses. Ultrafast chirality: inducing and detecting electron currents in chiral molecules, extremely efficient chiral discrimination of molecules. Evolution of attosecond spectroscopy from atoms and molecules to solids: towards all-optical imaging of topological properties and phase transitions.
WS (Track I): Advanced Atomic Physics
Quantum mechanics of simple and complex atoms, simple quantum mechanical model systems entangled states, perturbation theory, experimental techniques (vacuum and atomic beam generation, ion/electron spectrometer, reaction microscope), laser techniques, Rydberg atoms, atoms in external fields, photoionization, Fano theory , multichannel quantum defect theory, atoms in strong laser fields, x-ray spectroscopy, free electron lasers, light-atom interaction in two and three level systems, precision spectroscopy, fundamental experiments, trapping and (laser) cooling of atoms and ions, Bose-Einstein condensation, atomic physics experiments for quantum computing and simulation.
WS (Track II): Intermolecular Forces
Examples and importance of intermolecular interactions in physics, chemistry, biology, and pharmacy; experimental and theoretical methods for determination of intermolecular potentials; differences to chemical bonds; long-range and short-range contributions; radial and angular dependence of individual components (electrostatic, induction and polarization, London dispersion, resonance forces, Pauli repulsion); classical and quantum mechanical description; properties and spectroscopic analysis of hydrogen bonds (definition, energy, geometry, importance, infrared spectrum, tunneling processes, proton transfer, zero-point energy effects, examples); van der Waals forces; types of crystals; properties of liquids; dynamics of intermolecular forces (energy dissipation, coupling, dissociation).