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Journal Articles The European Physical Journal D : Atomic, molecular, optical and plasma physics Year : 2002

Magnetic field effects on the 1083 nm atomic line of helium

Abstract

The structure of the excited $2^{3}$S and $2^{3}$P triplet states of $^{3}$He and $^{4}$He in an applied magnetic field B is studied using different approximations of the atomic Hamiltonian. All optical transitions (line positions and intensities) of the 1083 nm $2^{3}$S-$2^{3}$P transition are computed as a function of B. The effect of metastability exchange collisions between atoms in the ground state and in the $2^{3}$S metastable state is studied, and rate equations are derived, for the populations these states in the general case of an isotopic mixture in an arbitrary field B. It is shown that the usual spin-temperature description remains valid. A simple optical pumping model based on these rate equations is used to study the B-dependence of the population couplings which result from the exchange collisions. Simple spectroscopy measurements are performed using a single-frequency laser diode on the 1083 nm transition. The accuracy of frequency scans and of measurements of transition intensities is studied. Systematic experimental verifications are made for B=0 to 1.5 T. Optical pumping effects resulting from hyperfine decoupling in high field are observed to be in good agreement with the predictions of the simple model. Based on adequately chosen absorption measurements at 1083 nm, a general optical method to measure the nuclear polarisation of the atoms in the ground state in an arbitrary field is described. It is demonstrated at $B\sim$0.1 T, a field for which the usual optical methods could not operate.

Dates and versions

hal-00001614 , version 1 (25-05-2004)

Identifiers

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Emmanuel Courtade, François Marion, Pierre-Jean Nacher, Geneviève Tastevin, K. Kiersnowski, et al.. Magnetic field effects on the 1083 nm atomic line of helium. The European Physical Journal D : Atomic, molecular, optical and plasma physics, 2002, 21, pp.25-55. ⟨10.1140/epjd/e2002-00176-1⟩. ⟨hal-00001614⟩
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