What Do We Do?

We leverage the laws of quantum mechanics to control molecules using cryogenics and lasers.

Why Is This Important?

To advance understanding of complex quantum systems and ultracold chemistry.

Welcome to the McCarron Group at the University of Connecticut.

Our group’s research focuses on experimental studies in quantum science and atomic, molecular and optical (AMO) physics. The emphasis is on methods to directly produce and probe molecules at ultracold temperatures (< 0.001 K) using cryogenics and laser-cooling and trapping techniques. These low temperatures enable exquisite control and expose the quantum nature of molecular interactions to careful study.

This research  develops new techniques applicable to molecular species with favorable properties to advance our understanding of strongly interacting quantum systems and ultracold organic chemistry. Our work will help to establish ultracold molecules as an improved resource for quantum science, precision measurements and new emerging quantum technologies.


Learn about our research activities applying laser cooling and trapping techniques to molecules.


Details about the academic courses recently taught and under development by our group members.


Information about the outreach efforts that integrate our research group into the local community.

Latest News

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 May 2021

  We have recently detected a beam of cold CH radicals from our cryogenic source using laser induced fluorescence at 431 nm.

Preliminary measurements indicate that the beam rotational temperature is ~0.5 K and the mean forward velocity is ~130 m/s. We will now work to both increase the flux and demonstrate optical cycling in CH.

 April 2021

We can now detect cold AlCl molecules using our UV laser to excite the X-A transition at 261.5 nm. Inside the source, we measure a peak optical depth > 4 and produce a beam of AlCl molecules containing ~4 x10^(11) molecules/steradian/pulse in the rovibrational ground state.

We’re very grateful to the Hemmerling Lab at UC Riverside for sharing their experience producing AlCl via laser ablation.

Our next steps are to fully characterize the molecular beam and perform spectroscopy relevant to optical cycling in this species.