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Research Van Swinderen Institute Fundamental Interactions and Symmetries (TRIµP)

The Al41Catraz Experiment

Ultra-sensitive Isotope Trace Analysis of Calcium

We are using laser cooling and trapping methods to separate and detect, with extreme sensitivity, different calcium isotopes. The ultimate goal of the experiment is to determine the concentration of 41Ca in a natural sample of calcium. The relative abundance of 41Ca in such a sample is roughly 10-15. 41Ca could be very useful as a tracer in Osteoporosis studies, and could possibly also be used to date calcium-containing material from the Pleistocene. The half-life of 41Ca is on the order of 105 years.

A recent photograph of the experimental setup
A recent photograph of the experimental setup
Last modified:20 June 2014 10.19 a.m.