Journal article

Suppression of spin-exchange relaxation in tilted magnetic fields within the geophysical range

  • Scholtes, Theo Leibniz Institute of Photonic Technology, Jena, Germany - Department of Physics, University of Fribourg, Switzerland
  • Pustelny, Szymon Marian Smoluchowski Institute of Physics, Jagiellonian University, Cracow, Poland
  • Fritzsche, Stephan Helmholtz-Institut Jena, Jena, Germany - Theoretisch-Physikalisches Institut, Friedrich-Schiller-Universität Jena, Germany
  • Schultze, Volkmar Leibniz Institute of Photonic Technology, Jena, Germany
  • Stolz, Ronny Leibniz Institute of Photonic Technology, Jena, Germany
  • Meyer, Hans-Georg Leibniz Institute of Photonic Technology, Jena, Germany
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  • Physical Review A. - 2016, vol. 94, no. 1, p. 13403
English We present a detailed experimental and theoretical study on the relaxation of spin coherence due to the spin-exchange mechanism arising in the electronic ground states of alkali-metal vapor atoms. As opposed to the well-explored formation of a stretched state in a longitudinal geometry (magnetic field parallel to the laser propagation direction) we employ adapted hyperfine-selective optical pumping in order to suppress spin-exchange relaxation. By comparing measurements of the intrinsic relaxation rate of the spin coherence in the ground state of cesium atoms with detailed density-matrix simulations we show that the relaxation due to spin-exchange collisions can be reduced substantially even in a tilted magnetic field of geomagnetic strength, the major application case of scalar magnetic surveying. This explains the observed striking improvement in sensitivity and further deepens the understanding of the light- narrowed Mx magnetometer, which was presented recently. Additionally, new avenues for investigating the dynamics in alkali-metal atoms governed by the spin-exchange interaction and interacting with arbitrary external fields open up.
Faculté des sciences et de médecine
Département de Physique
  • English
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