Magnetometry with Microwave-Assisted Optical Pumping in Warm Rb Vapor and Microfabricated Rb Vapor Cells

  • Author / Creator
    Lu, Ying-Ying
  • Quantum optical sensing is a maturing field that offers the capability to achieve extraor- dinary sensitivity. Atomic magnetometers, for example, now have the capability to detect brain signals and to precisely measure Earth’s gravity field. In optical atomic magnetome- ters, the electronic spins of the atoms in vapor form are aligned in the same direction by “pumping” the ensemble using laser light at a select frequency. Any magnetic field alters the spin states, which changes the optical properties of the vapor, such as the transmission of the laser light, providing a way to measure magnetic fields.
    After reviewing the theory of atomic structure and atom-light interactions relevant to the research presented here, I describe in the first part of this thesis a vector magnetometry method using microwave-assisted optical pumping, in which a microwave field resonant to the ground state hyperfine splitting of 87Rb pumps an ensemble of warm rubidium vapor, in addition to a strong optical pump beam, and a weaker optical probe beam. I present theoretical details as well as preliminary data demonstrating magnetic field measurements of a DC magnetic field. The measurements were taken when the DC field was aligned at various angles relative to the microwave magnetic field alignment. I compare theoretical and experimental differences in the measurements.
    With new methods for quantum devices comes the need for portability. In the second part of this thesis, we demonstrate the fabrication of millimeter-sized rubidium vapor cells using silicon micro-machining techniques. This method is relatively inexpensive compared to glass-blowing methods and allows rapid, large-scale production. I describe our process flow and demonstrate the presence of rubidium atoms inside our vapor cells. To conclude, suggestions for improvement are discussed.

  • Subjects / Keywords
  • Graduation date
    Fall 2021
  • Type of Item
  • Degree
    Master of Science
  • DOI
  • License
    This thesis is made available by the University of Alberta Libraries with permission of the copyright owner solely for non-commercial purposes. This thesis, or any portion thereof, may not otherwise be copied or reproduced without the written consent of the copyright owner, except to the extent permitted by Canadian copyright law.