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Published August 14, 1995 | public
Journal Article Open

Optical Larmor Beat Detection of High-Resolution Nuclear Magnetic Resonance in a Semiconductor Heterostructure


A new method of optical nuclear magnetic resonance, Larmor beat detection, is described and demonstrated on a III-V semiconductor heterostructure. Modulation of the circular polarization of luminescence at the difference between two nuclear spin precession frequencies is induced by rf pulses. One isotope provides a spin-locked reference field, while NMR transients of a second isotope are observed optically in real time. Order-of-magnitude improvement in resolution and sensitivity over previous techniques is obtained, revealing weak electric field gradients in single epitaxial structures.

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©1995 The American Physical Society. Received 20 March 1995. This work was funded by the NSF program in Materials Synthesis and processing and by NASA through the Caltech President's Fund. We thank A. Ksendzov, J. Liu, and F. Grunthaner of the NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory's Center for Space Microelectronics Technology for sample preparation and luminescence characterization, and L. Burnett and A. Perry for cryogenics advice.


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