Publication Title

Optics Express

Document Type


Department or Program

Physics and Astronomy

Publication Date



We demonstrate partial-transfer absorption imaging as a technique for repeatedly imaging an ultracold atomic ensemble with minimal perturbation. We prepare an atomic cloud in a state that is dark to the imaging light. We then use a microwave pulse to coherently transfer a small fraction of the ensemble to a bright state, which we image using in situ absorption imaging. The amplitude or duration of the microwave pulse controls the fractional transfer from the dark to the bright state. For small transfer fractions, we can image the atomic cloud up to 50 times before it is depleted. As a sample application, we repeatedly image an atomic cloud oscillating in a dipole trap to measure the trap frequency.


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© 2019 Optical Society of America. Users may use, reuse, and build upon the article, or use the article for text or data mining, so long as such uses are for non-commercial purposes and appropriate attribution is maintained. All other rights are reserved.