Experimental demonstration of a fifth force due to chameleon field via cold atoms [CEA]


We tested a fifth force using cold atom experiments. The accelerated expansion of the universe implies the possibility of the presence of a scalar field throughout the universe driving the acceleration. This field would result in a detectable force between normal-matter objects. Theory of the chameleon field states that the force should be strong in a thin shell near the surface of a source object but greatly suppressed inside and outside of the source object. We used two atom clouds: one as the source and the other as the test mass; so the test mass can pass through the thin-shell region of the source mass. We detected the chameleon force and obtained the couple constant of about 4.5E11 between matter and the field. The chameleon force is considerably larger than Newtonian gravity at short distance; the interaction range is short enough to satisfy all experimental bounds on deviations from general relativity.

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H. Zhang
Mon, 13 Feb 17

Comments: 18 pages, 5 figures

Testing atomic collision theory with the two-photon continuum of astrophysical nebulae [CEA]


Accurate rates for energy-degenerate l-changing collisions are needed to determine cosmological abundances and recombination. There are now several competing theories for the treatment of this process, and it is not possible to test these experimentally. We show that the H I two-photon continuum produced by astrophysical nebulae is strongly affected by l-changing collisions. We perform an analysis of the different underlying atomic processes and simulate the recombination and two-photon spectrum of a nebula containing H and He. We provide an extended set of effective recombination coefficients and updated l-changing 2s-2p transition rates using several competing theories. In principle, accurate astronomical observations could determine which theory is correct.

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F. Guzman, N. Badnell, M. Chatzikos, et. al.
Mon, 30 Jan 17

Comments: 7 pages, 6 fig, 2 tables, accepted in MNRAS

PAMOP project: computations in support of experiments and astrophysical applications [CL]


Our computation effort is primarily concentrated on support of current and future measurements being carried out at various synchrotron radiation facilities around the globe, and photodissociation computations for astrophysical applications. In our work we solve the Schr\”odinger or Dirac equation for the appropriate collision problem using the R-matrix or R-matrix with pseudo-states approach from first principles. The time dependent close-coupling (TDCC) method is also used in our work. A brief summary of the methodology and ongoing developments implemented in the R-matrix suite of Breit-Pauli and Dirac-Atomic R-matrix codes (DARC) is presented.

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B. McLaughlin, C. Ballance, M. Pindzola, et. al.
Tue, 17 Jan 17

Comments: 17 pages, 10 figures: chapter in the book, High Performance Computing in Science and Engineering’16, edited by W. E. Nagel, D. B. Kr\”oner, and M. Reich (Springer, New York and Berlin, 2017)

Radiative data for highly excited 3d8 4d levels in Ni II from laboratory measurements and atomic calculations [SSA]


This work reports new experimental radiative lifetimes and calculated oscillator strengths for transitions from 3d8 4d levels of astrophysical interest in singly ionized nickel. Radiative lifetimes of seven high-lying levels of even parity in Ni II (98400 -100600 cm-1) have been measured using the time-resolved laser-induced fluorescence method. Two-step photon excitation of ions produced by laser ablation has been utilized to populate the levels. Theoretical calculations of the radiative lifetimes of the measured levels and transition probabilities from these levels are reported. The calculations have been performed using a pseudo-relativistic Hartree-Fock method, taking into account core polarization effects. A new set of transition probabilities and oscillator strengths has been deduced for 477 Ni II transitions of astrophysical interest in the spectral range 194 – 520 nm depopulating even parity 3d8 4d levels. The new calculated gf-values are, on the average, about 20 % higher than a previous calculation by Kurucz (this http URL) and yield lifetimes within 5 % of the experimental values.

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H. Hartman, L. Engstrom, H. Lundberg, et. al.
Wed, 11 Jan 17

Comments: 17 pages

Testing sub-gravitational forces on atoms from a miniature, in-vacuum source mass [CL]


Gravity is the weakest fundamental interaction and the only one that has not been measured at the particle level. Traditional experimental methods, from astronomical observations to torsion balances, use macroscopic masses to both source and probe gravitational fields. Matter wave interferometers have used neutrons, atoms and molecular clusters as microscopic test particles, but initially probed the field sourced by the entire earth. Later, the gravitational field arising from hundreds of kilograms of artificial source masses was measured with atom interferometry. Miniaturizing the source mass and moving it into the vacuum chamber could improve positioning accuracy, allow the use of monocrystalline source masses for improved gravitational measurements, and test new physics, such as beyond-standard-model (“fifth”) forces of nature and non-classical effects of gravity. In this work, we detect the gravitational force between freely falling cesium atoms and an in-vacuum, centimeter-sized source mass using atom interferometry with state-of-the-art sensitivity. The ability to sense gravitational-strength coupling is conjectured to access a natural lower bound for fundamental forces, thereby representing an important milestone in searches for physics beyond the standard model. A local, in-vacuum source mass is particularly sensitive to a wide class of interactions whose effects would otherwise be suppressed beyond detectability in regions of high matter density. For example, our measurement strengthens limits on a number of cosmologically-motivated scalar field models, such as chameleon and symmetron fields, by over two orders of magnitude and paves the way toward novel measurements of Newton’s gravitational constant G and the gravitational Aharonov-Bohm effect

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M. Jaffe, P. Haslinger, V. Xu, et. al.
Fri, 16 Dec 16

Comments: N/A

Stellar laboratories. VIII. New Zr IV – VII, Xe IV – V, and Xe VII oscillator strengths and the Al, Zr, and Xe abundances in the hot white dwarfs G191-B2B and RE0503-289 [CL]


For the spectral analysis of high-resolution and high-signal-to-noise spectra of hot stars, state-of-the-art non-local thermodynamic equilibrium (NLTE) model atmospheres are mandatory. These are strongly dependent on the reliability of the atomic data that is used for their calculation.
To search for Zr and Xe lines in the ultraviolet (UV) spectra of G191-B2B and RE0503-289, new Zr IV-VII, Xe IV-V, and Xe VIII oscillator strengths were calculated. This allows for the first time, determination of the Zr abundance in white dwarf (WD) stars and improvement of the Xe abundance determinations.
We calculated Zr IV-VII, Xe IV-V, and Xe VIII oscillator strengths to consider radiative and collisional bound-bound transitions of Zr and Xe in our NLTE stellar-atmosphere models for the analysis of their lines exhibited in UV observations of the hot WDs G191-B2B and RE0503-289.
We identified one new Zr IV, 14 new Zr V, and ten new Zr VI lines in the spectrum of RE0503-289. Zr was detected for the first time in a WD. We measured a Zr abundance of -3.5 +/- 0.2 (logarithmic mass fraction, approx. 11 500 times solar). We dentified five new Xe VI lines and determined a Xe abundance of -3.9 +/- 0.2 (approx. 7500 times solar). We determined a preliminary photospheric Al abundance of -4.3 +/- 0.2 (solar) in RE0503-289. In the spectra of G191-B2B, no Zr line was identified. The strongest Zr IV line (1598.948 A) in our model gave an upper limit of -5.6 +/- 0.3 which is about 100 times solar. No Xe line was identified in the UV spectrum of G191-B2B and we confirmed the previously determined upper limit of -6.8 +/- 0.3 (ten times solar).
Precise measurements and calculations of atomic data are a prerequisite for advanced NLTE stellar-atmosphere modeling. Observed Zr IV – VI and Xe VI – VII line profiles in the UV spectrum of RE0503-289 were simultaneously well reproduced.

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T. Rauch, S. Gamrath, P. Quinet, et. al.
Wed, 23 Nov 16

Comments: 137 pages, 11 figures

Non-Elastic Processes in Atom Rydberg-Atom Collisions: Review of State of Art and Problems [CL]


In our previous research, it has been demonstrated that such inelastic processes in atom Rydberg-atom collisions, as chemi-ionization and (n-n’) mixing, should be considered together. Here we will review the present state of the art and the actual problems will be discussed. In this context, we will consider the influence of the (n-n’)-mixing during a symmetric atom Rydberg-atom collision processes on the intensity of chemi-ionization process. It will be taken into account H(1s) + H*(n) collisional systems, where the principal quantum number n $>>$ 1. It will be demonstrated that the inclusion of (n-n’) mixing in the calculation, influences significantly on the values of chemi-ionization rate coefficients, particularly in the lower part of the block of the Rydberg states. Different possible channels of the (n-n’)-mixing influence on chemi-ionization rate coefficients will be demonstrated. The possibility of interpretation of the (n-n’)-mixing influence will be considered on the basis of two existing methods for describing of the inelastic processes in symmetrical atom Rydberg-atom collisions.

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A. Mihajlov, V. Sreckovic, L. Ignjatovic, et. al.
Tue, 22 Nov 16

Comments: 7 pages, 2 figures