Subfemtotesla scalar atomic magnetometry using multipass cells

D. Sheng, S. Li, N. Dural, M. V. Romalis

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

251 Scopus citations


Scalar atomic magnetometers have many attractive features but their sensitivity has been relatively poor. We describe a Rb scalar gradiometer using two multipass optical cells. We use a pump-probe measurement scheme to suppress spin-exchange relaxation and two probe pulses to find the spin precession zero crossing times with a resolution of 1 psec. We realize a magnetic field sensitivity of 0.54 fT/Hz1/2, which improves by an order of magnitude the best scalar magnetometer sensitivity and exceeds, for example, the quantum limit set by the spin-exchange collisions for a scalar magnetometer with the same measurement volume operating in a continuous regime.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number160802
JournalPhysical review letters
Issue number16
StatePublished - Apr 18 2013

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • General Physics and Astronomy


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