Laboratory of Cold Atoms Near Surfaces


1pytanie (one question)

Almost everybody uses them. Almost nobody knows how they work.

How does a mobile phone work – a short answer is given here (in Polish only) in the section 1pytanie of the Jagiellonian University portal.



Segway type self-balanced robot, based on a gyroscopic sensor.
Main parts of the robot are:
1. the sensor: gyroscope with I2C output – part of the Pololu AltIMU 10v4 sensor (L3GD20)
2. IR receiver - my own receiver for LEGO Technic remote controller. It is based on ATTiny84 working as a I2C slave and TSOP34338SS1F IR receiver. The microcontroller was programmed with Atmel Studio 7.0. I used the TWI slave library from
3. the software is based on the HiTechnic program written in NXC. I changed the parameters, I have implemented the I2C sensor instead of the original analog one and have added handling of my IR receiver.
4. the connectors are from

>>> presentations and experiments <<<

(c) 2015-2017 Tomasz Kawalec


New article in European Journal of Physics

Our new article entitled The parametric resonance – from LEGO Mindstorms to cold atoms (Tomasz Kawalec, Aleksandra Sierant) will appear soon in European Journal of Physics. We show a method to use LEGO Mindstorms sets to present and investigate a parametric resonance for a pendulum with a modulated length. We also show a simple wireless sensor of rotation, angular velocity and acceleration – very useful for an analysis of a pendulum movement.

Full version of the article is available here, along with supplementary material – movies and programs.

An author-created version is here.
This is an author-created, un-copyedited version of an article accepted for publication in European Journal of Physics. Neither the European Physical Society nor IOP Publishing Ltd is responsible for any errors or omissions in this version of the manuscript or any version derived from it.


New article in Plasmonics

Our new article entitled Surface Plasmon Polaritons Probed with Cold Atoms has been just published in Plasmonics.

In the article we show a direct measurement of the surface plasmon polaritons (SPPs) intensity. The SPPs were excited on the gold-vacuum interface on the modified inner surface of DVD-R and DVD-RW discs. In our experimental setup we have used cold atoms from a magneto-optical trap (MOT) as a convenient tool to quantify SPPs intensity.

Using an infrared camera we have also investigated thermoplasmonic effects accompanying energy scattering of the propagating SPPs.

ReadCube:Tomasz Kawalec, Aleksandra Sierant, Roman Panaś, Jacek Fiutowski, Dobrosława Bartoszek-Bober, Leszek Józefowski, Horst-Günter Rubahn, Surface Plasmon Polaritons Probed with Cold Atoms, Plasmonics (2017)



Cell phones

A lecture in Polish about mobile phones technology.

How does a mobile phone work?

What was the content of the first conversation via a cell phone?

Are our calls and SMSs encrypted?

How does the modern radio communication work?

Why the speed of light is important in GSM?

What is the difference between NMT, GSM and UMTS technologies?

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