Spin-exchange collisions often play a dominant role in the broadening of Zeeman resonances in an alkali-metal vapor. Contrary to intuitive expectations, at high alkali-metal densities this broadening can be completely eliminated by operating in a low magnetic field, allowing construction of ultrasensitive atomic magnetometers. We describe a detailed study of the Zeeman resonance frequencies and linewidths as a function of the magnetic field, alkali-metal density, and the degree of spin polarization of the atoms. Due to the nonlinear nature of the density matrix equations describing the spin-exchange collisions both the gyromagnetic ratio and the linewidth change as a function of the polarization. The results of experimental measurements are in excellent agreement with analytical and numerical solutions of the density matrix equations.
|Original language||English (US)|
|Journal||Physical Review A - Atomic, Molecular, and Optical Physics|
|State||Published - Feb 1 2005|
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Atomic and Molecular Physics, and Optics