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Phys Rev Lett. 2007 May 18;98(20):200801. Epub 2007 May 17.

High-resolution magnetometry with a spinor Bose-Einstein condensate.

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Department of Physics, University of California, Berkeley California 94720, USA.


We demonstrate a precise magnetic microscope based on direct imaging of the Larmor precession of a 87Rb spinor Bose-Einstein condensate. This magnetometer attains a field sensitivity of 8.3 pT/Hz1/2 over a measurement area of 120 microm2, an improvement over the low-frequency field sensitivity of modern SQUID magnetometers. The achieved phase sensitivity is close to the atom shot-noise limit, estimated as 0.15 pT/Hz1/2 for a unity duty cycle measurement, suggesting the possibilities of spatially resolved spin-squeezed magnetometry. This magnetometer marks a significant application of degenerate atomic gases to metrology.

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