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Nondestructive lensless imaging on cold rubidium atoms

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Abstract

We report experimental realization of lensless imaging on cold rubidium atoms confined in a magneto-optical trap. This imaging scheme relies on the off-resonant light refraction from the cold atoms and is employed in a phase-tunable Mach–Zehnder interferometer, accompanied with phase-shifting interferometry. With this setup, it allows obtaining the probe light phase distribution in the far field after passing the atoms, from which the near-field phase image of the atomic cloud is retrieved using the Fresnel–Kirchhoff integral. We show the phase images can be effectively reconstructed, and the measured two-dimensional phase distributions are in good agreement with the theory.

© 2017 Optical Society of America

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