Physics 250, Spring 2006

Special topics in Atomic Physics: Interaction of Atoms with Polarized Light

When and where: TuTh 11-12:30, location: 56 Barrows

Format: two 1.5-hr class meetings per week (student participation strongly encouraged); discussion on individual basis (by appointment)

Instructor: Professor Dmitry Budker

Office hour: Teusdays, 2-3, or by appointment; in 273 Birge

Course credit will be given on the basis of the homework (50%) and oral presentations (50%). Each student is required to make at least one presentation during the semester; more presentations are encouraged! A brief one-page (professionally formatted and edited) abstract of the presentation should be turned in at the time of presentation. Please include the presenter's name and the date of the presentation in the abstract. The abstract should be composed as if it was for a talk to be presented at the American Physical Society meeting, and should give your colleagues a convincing reason to attend your talk. It should contain important key-words that will help them identify the subject area of your research and the most important result(s) to be presented.

Synopsis of the course:

This course will consist of two components:

1. Lectures based on a new textbook by M. Auzinsh, D. Budker, and S. M. Rochester (in preparation);

2. Discussion of selected "hot" topics in AMO physics along the lines of what was done in previous years: .

The course is open for both graduate and advanced undergraduate students.

Tentative course outline:

Required text: none

Recommended texts (general):

  1. Bransden & Joachain, PHYSICS OF ATOMS AND MOLECULES, 2nd edition, Longman
  2. D. Budker, D. F. Kimball, and D. P. DeMille, Atomic Physics. An Exploration through Problems and Solutions, Oxford University Press, 2004 [ISBN:0198509499, 0198509502 (pbk.); Physics QC776 .B83 2004)] (Click here)
  3. Foot, C.J., ATOMIC PHYSICS, Oxford

Recommended texts (good textbooks on specific subfields):

  1. C. Cohen-Tannoudji, Atoms in Electromagnetic Fields, 2nd ed., World Scientific, 2004.

Physics (and not-quite-physics) bed-time reading:

  1. Charles H. Townes, How the Laser Happened: Adventures of a Scientist, Oxford University Press, 1999 (ISBN: 0195122682)
  2. Seabrook, W. Doctor Wood, Modern Wizard of the Laboratory. New York, Harcourt, Brace and company, 1941 (Physics Library QC16.W6 S4)
  3. Margarita Ryutova-Kemoklidze, The Quantum Generation: Highlights and Tragedies of the Golden Age of Physics, Springer Verlag, 1995 (ISBN: 0387532986)
  4. Segrè, Emilio. A Mind Always in Motion: The Autobiography of Emilio Segre. Berkeley: University of California Press, c1993.

News flash!

Seminars and Colloquia

Lecture Notes, Viewgraphs, Electronic Tutorials

Assorted Physics-Related Links, Web Resources

Individual research topics and presentations:


Acknowledgment and Disclaimer: This material is based in part upon work supported by the National Science Foundation. Any opinions, findings and conclusions or recomendations expressed in this material are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the views of the National Science Foundation (NSF).