Junwen Zou and Stephen Hogan
Resonant dipole-dipole interactions between Rydberg helium atoms and cold ground-state ammonia molecules allow Förster resonance energy transfer between the electronic degrees of freedom in the atom, and the nuclear degrees of freedom associated with the inversion of the molecule [1,2]. In this talk I will describe recent experiments in which we have exploited the Stark effect in the triplet Rydberg states in helium, with values of the principal quantum number n between 38 and 40, to tune these interactions through resonance using electric fields below 10 V/cm. Resonance widths as narrow as 70 MHz have been observed in this work. These are indicative of mean centre-of-mass collision speeds on the order of 10 m/s, and collisions that occur at temperatures significantly below 1 K. Studies of Förster resonances in this collision system are of interest in the search for dipole-bound states  of Rydberg atoms or molecules and polar ground-state molecules, in the exploitation of long-range dipole-dipole interactions to regulate access to ion-molecule chemistry that can occur if the polar molecule penetrates inside the Rydberg electron charge distribution , and for coherent control and non-destructive detection [5,6].
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