Electric-field sensing using single diamond spins

Date

2011

Authors

Dolde, F.
Fedder, H.
Doherty, Marcus
Nobauer, T.
Rempp, F.
Balasubramanian, G
Wolf, T.
Reinhart, F
Hollenberg, Lloyd
Jelezko, F

Journal Title

Journal ISSN

Volume Title

Publisher

Nature Publishing Group

Abstract

The ability to sensitively detect individual charges under ambient conditions would benefit a wide range of applications across disciplines. However, most current techniques are limited to low-temperature methods such as single-electron transistors1,2, single-electron electrostatic force microscopy and scanning tunnelling microscopy4. Here we introduce a quantum-metrology technique demonstrating precision three-dimensional electric-field measurement using a single nitrogen-vacancy defect centre spin in diamond. An a.c. electric-field sensitivity reaching 202 ± 6 V cm-1 Hz-1/2 has been achieved. This corresponds to the electric field produced by a single elementary charge located at a distance of ∼ 150 nm from our spin sensor with averaging for one second. The analysis of the electronic structure of the defect centre reveals how an applied magnetic field influences the electric-field-sensing properties. We also demonstrate that diamond-defect-centre spins can be switched between electric - and magnetic-field sensing modes and identify suitable parameter ranges for both detector schemes. By combining magnetic and electric-field sensitivity, nanoscale detection and ambient operation, our study should open up new frontiers in imaging and sensing applications ranging from materials science to bioimaging.

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Citation

Source

Nature Physics

Type

Journal article

Book Title

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DOI

10.1038/nphys1969

Restricted until

2037-12-31