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Merideth Frey; Nezih Dural; Michael Romalis
Princeton University, Princeton, New Jersey
Research groups at many institutions are trying to find practical and economical ways to commercialize optical magnetometry, said Dr. Michael Romalis, a physics professor at Princeton University and a prominent researcher in the field.
"My guess is that it will take a few years for these efforts to mature," he said.
Interview with: Prof Michael Romalis from Princeton University.
Princeton University Michael Romalis is a professor of Physics at Princeton University. He received his BS from Illinois Institute of Technology in 1993 and a Ph.D. from Princeton in 1997. From 1997 to 2001 he was at the University of Washington, first as a post-doctoral associate and then as an assistant professor. He returned to Princeton in 2002. Romalis' research is focused on precision measurements using spin-polarized atoms. He contributed to the search for a permanent electric dipole moment using 199Hg atoms and developed non-linear spin spectroscopy techniques for EDM search in liquid 129Xe. He developed atomic magnetometry with high-density alkali-metal vapor and explored its use for detection of biomagnetism, paleomagnetism, and nuclear magnetic resonance. His work on alkali-metalnoble-gas co-magnetometers has led to new limits on violation of Lorentz and CPT invariance and on long-range spin-dependent forces, as well as applications for inertial rotation sensing. In addition to these topics, his current interests include the use of quantum entanglement for precision measurements, novel NMR detection techniques, and development of versatile techniques for ultra-sensitive atomic magnetometry. Romalis was a recipient of the Packard Fellowship and a member of the executive committee of the APS topical group on precision measurements and fundamental constants.
Princeton physics professor Michael Romalis wanted the ends of the cells, inverted like the bases of champagne bottles, to be made 120 microns thick-the thickness of a human hair-with a margin of error of only 10 microns.
The aluminosilicate glass was so thin that Mike had to measure it by x-ray. To make matters worse, Dr. Romalis' experiment had a design paradox: it required the thin glass to withstand internal pressures of up to 300 pounds per square inch. "Success" meant that only half the cells Mike made exploded in testing. Dr. Romalis then used the Stanford Linear Accelerator to shoot a beam of highly accelerated electrons at the nuclear target cells in order to study the properties of quarks. Mike says he never tires of the medium. If you put him in an art museum, he will beeline to the glass. It is strong, inflatable, versatile. "In the arts," he explains, "there's what you call Ham and Egg Commitment. Hermetic in Hoyt Laboratory, Mike answers the phone with gusto: "Hey man, what's up?