Observation of Stückelberg oscillations in dipole-dipole interactions
We have observed StÃ¼ckelberg oscillations in the dipole-dipole interaction between Rydberg atoms with an externally applied radio-frequency field. The oscillating rf field brings the interaction between cold Rydberg atoms in two separated volumes into resonance. We observe multiphoton transitions when varying the amplitude of the rf field and the static electric field offset. The angular momentum states we use show a quadratic Stark shift, which leads to a fundamentally different behavior than linearly shifting states. Both cases are studied theoretically using the Floquet approach and are compared. The amplitude of the sidebands, related to the interaction strength, is given by the Bessel function in the linearly shifting case and by the generalized Bessel function in the quadratically shifting case. The oscillatory behavior of both functions corresponds to StÃ¼ckelberg oscillations, an interference effect described by the semiclassical Landau-Zener-StÃ¼ckelberg model. The measurements prove coherent dipole-dipole interaction during at least 0.6âÎ¼s.