Photoassociation of ultracold long-range polyatomic molecules

Marko Gacesa, Jason N. Byrd, Jonathan Smucker, John A. Montgomery, Robin Côté

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

7 Scopus citations


We explore the feasibility of optically forming long-range tetratomic and larger polyatomic molecules in their ground electronic state from ultracold pairs of polar molecules aligned by external fields. Depending on the relative orientation of the interacting diatomic molecules, we find that a tetratomic can be formed either as a weakly bound complex in a very extended halo state or as a pure long-range molecule composed of collinear or nearly collinear diatomic molecules. The latter is a novel type of tetratomic molecule comprised of two diatomic molecules bound at a long intermolecular range and predicted to be stable in cold and ultracold regimes. Our numerical studies were conducted for ultracold KRb and RbCs, resulting in the production of (KRb)2 and (RbCs)2 complexes, respectively. Based on universal properties of long-range interactions between polar molecules, we identify triatomic and tetratomic linear polar molecules with a favorable ratio of dipole and quadrupole moments for which the approach could be generalized to form larger polyatomic molecules.

Original languageBritish English
Article number023163
JournalPhysical Review Research
Issue number2
StatePublished - Jun 2021


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