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Chip-Scale Atomic Magnetometers



P Schwindt, Svenja A. Knappe, V Shah, Leo W. Hollberg, John E. Kitching, Li-Anne Liew, John M. Moreland


Using the techniques of micro-electro-mechanical systems, we have constructed a small, low-power magnetic sensor based on alkali atoms. We use a coherent population trapping resonance to probe the interaction of the atoms' magnetic moment with a magnetic field, and we detect changes in the magnetic flux density with a sensitivity of 50 pT Hz-1/2 at 10 Hz. The magnetic sensor has a size of 12 mm3 and dissipates 195 mW of power. Further improvements in size, power dissipation, and magnetic field sensitivity are immediately foreseeable, and such a device could provide a hand-held, battery-operated magnetometer with an atom shot-noise limited sensitivity of 0.05 pT Hz-1/2.
Journal of Applied Physics
85 No 26


Atomic sensors, coherent population trapping, magnetometers, micro-electro-mechanical systems


Schwindt, P. , Knappe, S. , Shah, V. , Hollberg, L. , Kitching, J. , Liew, L. and Moreland, J. (2004), Chip-Scale Atomic Magnetometers, Journal of Applied Physics (Accessed April 24, 2024)
Created December 1, 2004, Updated February 17, 2017