Generalized Stern-Gerlach Effect for Chiral Molecules

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Li, Yong
Bruder, C.
Sun, C. P.
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Abstract
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The Stern-Gerlach effect is well-known as spin-dependent splitting of a beam of atoms with magnetic moments by a magnetic-field gradient. Here, we show that an induced gauge potential may lead to a similar effect for chiral molecules. In the presence of three inhomogeneous light fields, the center-of-mass of a three-level chiral molecule is subject to an optically induced gauge potential, and the internal dynamics of the molecules can be described as an adiabatic evolution in the reduced pseudo-spin subspace of the two lowest energy levels. We demonstrate numerically that such an induced gauge potential can lead to observable pseudo-spin dependent and chirality-dependent generalized Stern-Gerlach effects for mixed left- and right-handed chiral molecules under realistic conditions.
Comment: 4+ pages, 4 figures
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Quantum Physics
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