[OPTICAL REVIEW Vol. 16, No. 1 (2009) 11-14]
© 2009 The Optical Society of Japan

Efficient Generation of Cold Atoms towards a Source for Atom Lithography

Ryuzo OHMUKAI, Masaharu HYODO1, Masayoshi WATANABE2, and Hitoshi KONDO

Department of Physics, Faculty of Education, Saitama University, 255 Shimo-okubo, Saitama 338-8570, Japan
1National Institute of Information and Communications Technology, 588-2 Iwaoka, Kobe 651-2492, Japan
2Department of Electronic Engineering, The University of Electro-Communications, 1-5-1 Chofugaoka, Chofu, Tokyo 182-8585, Japan

(Received June 30, 2008; Accepted November 29, 2008)

We report on the efficient generation of cold rubidium atoms as a potential coherent atom source for atom lithography. We successfully trapped and cooled 2.6 × 108 atoms in 5 s with a conventional magneto-optical trap simply by enlarging the diameter of the laser beam to 20 mm. The size of the laser-cooled atom cloud was measured to be 10 × 7 × 7 mm3. The number of trapped atoms was approximately 10 times as large as that of previous typical results, while the loading time of atoms remained the same.

Key words: atom lithography, magneto-optical trap, laser cooling, rubidium, atom source