QuSCo on-air: Dr Maxime Favier (College de France) “Circular Rydberg atoms for Quantum technologies”

In this session of QuSCo on-air, our guest, Dr Maxime Favier, from College de France, gives a talk about the application of Rydberg atoms for Quantum technologies, specifically for quantum sensing.


The extreme sensitivity of Rydberg levels to their environment makes them particularly appealing for emerging quantum sensing. The lifetime of low-angular-momentum laser-accessible levels is however limited to a few 100μs by optical transitions and microwave blackbody radiation (BBR) induced transfers at room temperature. An improvement of more than two orders of magnitude would be obtained with circular Rydberg levels in a cryogenic environment, extending the capabilities of Rydberg atoms platforms for quantum technologies.

In the talk, Dr Favier will focus on his group’s experimental preparation and manipulation of laser-cooled circular Rydberg atoms in an optical-access 4K-cryostat. Lifetime measurements reveal a 9K microwave blackbody temperature, and a corresponding 5ms lifetime of the circular Rydberg states. Ramsey interferometry shows coherence times solely limited by magnetic field noise.

He will present his group’s latest results on the first laser-trapping of circular Rydberg atoms, a crucial tool for all cold-atoms-based quantum technologies. They have demonstrated 2D laser-trapping of the long-lived circular Rydberg states for up to 10 ms in hollow Laguerre-Gauss laser trap generated with a spatial light modulator. they have characterized the trapping potential (including a measurement of the trapping frequency for the Rydberg atoms) and verified that it doesn’t affect the circular levels coherence properties.

This work is a key milestone towards new developments in quantum simulation, quantum metrology and quantum information processing with Rydberg atoms platforms.


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