Testing the effect of surface coatings on alkali atom polarization lifetimes

S. J. Seltzer, D. M. Rampulla, S. Rivillon-Amy, Y. J. Chabal, S. L. Bernasek, M. V. Romalis

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

52 Scopus citations


The evaluation of different surface coatings used in alkali metal atomic magnetometers is necessary for the improvement of sensitivity of these devices. A method to measure the polarization lifetime of alkali atoms in the region between substrates with different coatings was developed to determine the effectiveness of the coating at preserving alkali spin polarization as well as chemical compatibility and higherature stability. Multiple coatings can be compared under identical experimental conditions, using an experimental geometry that allows surface characterization before and after evaluation of the polarization lifetime. Multilayered, cross-linked octadecyltrichlorosilane films, alkyltrichlorosilane monolayers, and octadecylphosphonic acid monolayers were evaluated using this approach.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number103116
JournalJournal of Applied Physics
Issue number10
StatePublished - 2008

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • General Physics and Astronomy


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