Advanced helium magnetometer for space applications
- Slocum, Robert E.
- JAN 1, 1987.
- Physical Description:
- 1 electronic document
- Restrictions on Access:
- Unclassified, Unlimited, Publicly available.
- The goal of this effort was demonstration of the concepts for an advanced helium magnetometer which meets the demands of future NASA earth orbiting, interplanetary, solar, and interstellar missions. The technical effort focused on optical pumping of helium with tunable solid state lasers. We were able to demonstrate the concept of a laser pumped helium magnetometer with improved accuracy, low power, and sensitivity of the order of 1 pT. A number of technical approaches were investigated for building a solid state laser tunable to the helium absorption line at 1083 nm. The laser selected was an Nd-doped LNA crystal pumped by a diode laser. Two laboratory versions of the lanthanum neodymium hexa-aluminate (LNA) laser were fabricated and used to conduct optical pumping experiments in helium and demonstrate laser pumped magnetometer concepts for both the low field vector mode and the scalar mode of operation. A digital resonance spectrometer was designed and built in order to evaluate the helium resonance signals and observe scalar magnetometer operation. The results indicate that the laser pumped sensor in the VHM mode is 45 times more sensitive than a lamp pumped sensor for identical system noise levels. A study was made of typical laser pumped resonance signals in the conventional magnetic resonance mode. The laser pumped sensor was operated as a scalar magnetometer, and it is concluded that magnetometers with 1 pT sensitivity can be achieved with the use of laser pumping and stable laser pump sources.
- NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS) Collection.
- Document ID: 19930009210.
Accession ID: 93N18399.
- No Copyright.
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