[paper] Wigner Crystals of 229Th for Optical Excitation of the Nuclear Isomer

Wigner Crystals of 229Th for Optical Excitation of the Nuclear Isomer

C.J. Campbell et al.

doi: 10.1103/PhysRevLett.106.223001

We have produced laser-cooled Wigner crystals of 229Th3+ in a linear Paul trap. The magnetic dipole (A) and electric quadrupole (B) hyperfine constants for four low-lying electronic levels and the relative isotope shifts with respect to 232Th3+ for three low-lying optical transitions are measured. Using the hyperfine B constants in conjunction with prior atomic structure calculations, a new value of the spectroscopic nuclear electric quadrupole moment Q=3.11(16)  eb is deduced. These results are a step towards optical excitation of the low-lying isomer level in the 229Th nucleus.

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