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Fundamental Symmetry Tests with Cooled Atoms: From Lorentz Invariance to Parity

May 10, 2013 11:00AM to 12:00PM
Gerald Gwinner, University of Manitoba
Building 203
Physics Division Colloquium
Tests of fundamental symmetries greatly benefit from the unrivaled precision of atomic physics measurements, in particular with cooled atoms and ions, and as a result numerous best limits on "new physics" beyond the Standard Model are set by atomic physics experiments. I will present a test of Lorentz invariance via the most precise measurement of relativistic time dilation using laser spectroscopy with electron-cooled Li+ ions in heavy-ion storage rings (1). In addition, I will discuss progress towards an atomic parity violation experiment with laser-cooled and trapped francium atoms at the radioactive beam facility ISAC at TRIUMF in Vancouver.

(1) Reinhardt et al., Nature Physics 3, 861 (2007), Novotny et al., Physical Review A 80, 022107 (2009)