The coherence of a hyperfine-state superposition of a trapped B9e+ ion in the presence of off-resonant light is studied experimentally. It is shown that Rayleigh elastic scattering of photons that does not change state populations also does not affect coherence. We observe coherence times that exceed the average scattering time of 19 photons which is determined from measured Stark shifts. This result implies that, with sufficient control over its parameters, laser light can be used to manipulate hyperfine-state superpositions with very little decoherence.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Physics and Astronomy(all)