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Sensors 2013, 13(8), 10449-10481; doi:10.3390/s130810449

Spectroscopy, Manipulation and Trapping of Neutral Atoms, Molecules, and Other Particles Using Optical Nanofibers: A Review

1
School of Chemistry and Physics, University of KwaZulu-Natal, Durban 4001, South Africa
2
Light-Matter Interactions Unit, OIST Graduate University, 1919-1 Tancha, Onna-son, Okinawa 904-0495, Japan
3
Physics Department, University College Cork, Cork, Ireland
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 31 May 2013 / Revised: 18 July 2013 / Accepted: 1 August 2013 / Published: 13 August 2013
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Nanotube and Nanowire Sensors)
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Abstract

The use of tapered optical fibers, i.e., optical nanofibers, for spectroscopy and the detection of small numbers of particles, such as neutral atoms or molecules, has been gaining interest in recent years. In this review, we briefly introduce the optical nanofiber, its fabrication, and optical mode propagation within. We discuss recent progress on the integration of optical nanofibers into laser-cooled atom and vapor systems, paying particular attention to spectroscopy, cold atom cloud characterization, and optical trapping schemes. Next, a natural extension of this work to molecules is introduced. Finally, we consider several alternatives to optical nanofibers that display some advantages for specific applications. View Full-Text
Keywords: optical nanofiber; taper; evanescent field; cold atoms; atomic vapor; single particle detection; optical cavities; laser cooling; spectroscopy; whispering gallery resonators optical nanofiber; taper; evanescent field; cold atoms; atomic vapor; single particle detection; optical cavities; laser cooling; spectroscopy; whispering gallery resonators
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY 3.0).

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MDPI and ACS Style

Morrissey, M.J.; Deasy, K.; Frawley, M.; Kumar, R.; Prel, E.; Russell, L.; Truong, V.G.; Nic Chormaic, S. Spectroscopy, Manipulation and Trapping of Neutral Atoms, Molecules, and Other Particles Using Optical Nanofibers: A Review. Sensors 2013, 13, 10449-10481.

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