Skip to main content
U.S. flag

An official website of the United States government

Dot gov

The .gov means it’s official.
Federal government websites often end in .gov or .mil. Before sharing sensitive information, make sure you’re on a federal government site.

Https

The site is secure.
The https:// ensures that you are connecting to the official website and that any information you provide is encrypted and transmitted securely.

Atomic Spectroscopy Group

The mission of the Atomic Spectroscopy Group is to measure, calculate, critically compile, and disseminate reference data on atomic properties and fundamental constants in support of basic research, commercial development, and national priorities.

The program in atomic spectroscopy at NIST provides accurate reference data on spectral lines and energy levels for a wide variety of important applications. Our spectrometers, among the most powerful of their type in the world, can record spectra from the extreme ultraviolet (wavelength = 1 nm) to the infrared (wavelength = 18 000 nm) and include a 10.7 m normal-incidence spectrograph, a 10.7 m grazing incidence spectrograph, a high resolution Fourier transform spectrometer, and a high accuracy Fabry-Pérot laser wavemeter. The Data Center compiles wavelengths, energy levels, and transition probabilities that support numerous applications in industry and the scientific community.

The Atomic Spectroscopy Group at NIST has a long history of contributions to optical science and metrology. Please read Joseph Reader's report on the group's history for more information.

Taking Measure: Just a Standard Blog

Photo of purplish black sky with a streak of bright lightning
Credit: Y. Ralchenko/NIST

In Pursuit of Plasma Power: Hot Stuff, Snowstorms, and Starry Skies. Do we really need hot stuff? I’m not talking about Donna Summer’s disco hit of 1979 or global warming. I’m not talking about anything so lukewarm as the surface of our sun—a mere 6,000 kelvins. I don’t even mean something as hot as 1,000,000 kelvins. No, the kind of hot stuff I’m talking about is closer to an unimaginable 200,000,000 kelvins! What possible use could we have for something so hot?

News and Updates

Projects and Programs

Spectroscopy of Engineered Atoms

Experiments with atomic systems designed to have features more favorable for improved measurements of atomic properties and constants of nature.

Plasma Metrology

Experimental and computational techniques in support of commercial and scientific uses of plasmas.

High Resolution Atomic Spectroscopy

Accurate measurements of atomic wavelengths, energy levels, oscillator strengths and isotope and hyperfine structure using diffraction grating spectrographs,

Publications

Awards

2015 French Award

The group is recognized for exceptional creativity and dedication in forging and continually improving the world's most comprehensive...

2009 APS Fellow - Yuri Ralchenko

Any active APS member is eligible for nomination and election to Fellowship. The criterion for election is exceptional contributions to the...

2004 APS Fellow - John Gillaspy

The criterion for election is exceptional contributions to the physics enterprise; e.g., outstanding physics research, important...

Contacts

Group Leader