Authors: J. Perez-Rios, M. E. Kim, C.-L. Hung
Journal Ref: New Journal of Physics 19, 123035 (2017)
Photoassociation (PA) is a powerful technique to synthesize molecules directly and continuously from cold and ultracold atoms into deeply bound molecular states. In freespace, however, PA efficiency is constrained by the number of spontaneous decay channels linking the initial excited molecular state to a sea of final (meta)stable rovibronic levels. Here, we propose a novel scheme based on molecules strongly coupled to a guided photonic mode in a photonic crystal waveguide that turns PA into a powerful tool for near deterministic formation of ultracold molecules in their ground rovibrational level. Our example shows a potential ground state molecule production efficiency , and a saturation rate molecules per second. By combining state-of-the-art cold atomic and molecular physics with nanophotonic engineering, our scheme presents a novel experimental package for trapping, cooling, and optically manipulating ultracold molecules, thus opening up new possibilities in the direction of ultracold chemistry and quantum information.