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News From the Field

New Method to Directly Probe the Quantum Collisions of Individual Atoms

April 18, 2007

Two atoms ready to collide A new method has been developed to directly, and precisely, measure a quantum property of individual atoms--the phase shifts that result when atoms collide at ultracold temperatures--in a way that is independent of the accuracy-limiting density of the atoms. These shifts are important for improving atomic clocks and other areas of contemporary atomic physics, including research on super-sensitive atom lasers and high-temperature superconductivity. Full Story

The Pennsylvania State University

The National Science Foundation (NSF) is an independent federal agency that supports fundamental research and education across all fields of science and engineering. In fiscal year (FY) 2016, its budget is $7.5 billion. NSF funds reach all 50 states through grants to nearly 2,000 colleges, universities and other institutions. Each year, NSF receives more than 48,000 competitive proposals for funding and makes about 12,000 new funding awards. NSF also awards about $626 million in professional and service contracts yearly.

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