Explorations of Magnetic Phases in F = 1 87Rb Spinor Condensates
Spinor Bose Einstein condensates have widely been sought after as perfect emulators of condensed matter phenomena, providing widely tunable and highly controlled systems. Utilizing a novel spin sensitive phase contrast imaging technique, the vector magnetization is measured in-situ with high spatial and temporal resolution and applied to a number of experiments. Using optically trapped F = 1 87Rb spinor condensates, the equilibrium phase diagram of a spin-1 Bose gas is quantitatively explored by observing the evolution of unmagnetized spin textures and their thermal equilibrium properties. Spin domain coarsening and a strong dependence of the spin configuration on the quadratic Zeeman shift is observed, supporting the predicted mean-field equilibrium phase diagram for small values of the quadratic shift. Additionally, spinor Bose gases are demonstrated to be an effective tool in calibrating and characterizing experimental imaging systems. Sinusoidal test patterns of varying pitch are created and used to extract the modulation transfer function and quantify optical aberrations which are of immense importance in systems which claim to have high spatial resolution. Lastly we realize an optical kagome geometry in a two-dimensional optical superlattice with a scalar Bose gases. The optical superlattice can be tuned between various geometries, including kagome, one-dimensional stripe, and decorated triangular lattice. Using atom optics we characterize the various geometries and demonstrate the versatility of this optical superlattice. The kagome geometry presents a new experimental arena for studies of geometrically frustrated systems.