Ionization Problems in Simple Quantum Systems Subject to Periodic Electromagnetic Fields of Arbitrary Strength

Student: John McClain

Advisors: Prof. Ovidiu Costin ( and Prof. Rodica Costin

I am working with the time-dependent Schrodinger equation which is meant to be a simple description of a quantum system in which an atom (hydrogen) is bombarded with electromagnetic radiation, say, in the form of a laser or an intense microwave field. The solution to this equation (given initial conditions) describe the behavior of the electron in the atom. We study the long time dependence of the solution to this equation to see if the electron eventually leaves the system. If it does, the atom has been ionized. If not, this system describes a bound state of the electron, meaning that, despite the disturbance from the radiation, the electron remains within the atom.

The general method is to take the Laplace transform (defined later) of the time-dependent Schrodinger Equation with respect to time. We then study the regularity and analyticity properties of the solution to the transformed equation. These properties reveal information about the time dependence of the solution of the original (untransformed) Schrodinger Equation.

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