Date of Award

Spring 1996

Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)



Committee Director

Mark D. Havey

Committee Member

Charles E. Hyde-Wright

Committee Member

Gary E. Copeland

Committee Member

Lawrence B. Weinstein

Committee Member

Daniel Sonenshine


The estimation of the adequacy of theoretical calculations on the atomic structure requires availability of the precise experimental data on radiative properties of the atoms. Such data is also required in astronomy and some important areas of technology. The lack of precision of traditional spectroscopic studies of atom presents a fundamental obstacle for progress in these areas. For example, in atomic rubidium, the best precision of the traditional spectroscopic results is on the order of about 1 - 5%, which does not allow for clear assessment of the latest sophisticated theoretical calculations on atomic rubidium structure, with emphasis on different, in nature, effects. This situation is typical for atomic physics in general.

The purpose of present study is obtaining the experimental data on the radiative properties of atomic rubidium with precision considerably higher than that of the traditional spectroscopic methods. This is accomplished by means of the two-photon quantum interference polarization spectroscopy. A two-photon polarization spectrum of the rubidium atom is obtained in the range of detunings -417 cm-1 to +99 cm-1 from atomic 5s2S1/2-5p 2P3/2-*8s2S1/2resonance. From analysis of the spectra the relativistic and many body effects on the wavefiinctions are revealed in the form of a uniquely defined parameter q = 2 x 10-6 (5) cm and an exact relation between parameters R and p which quantitatively describes the process:

R = 1.01756 (57) + 81.466 (15) p

where R is dimensionless and p is in cm. The obtained results can be thought of as specific experimentally established two-photon sum rules and can be used for testing the accuracy of the theoretical wavefiinctions. The experimental technique has important advantages comparing to some traditional spectroscopic methods and is essentially free of systematic effects.


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