Fluid-flow characterization with nuclear spins without magnetic resonance

Crawford, C. W.; Shoujun Xu; Siegel, Eric J.; Budker, Dmitry; Pines, Alexander
September 2008
Applied Physics Letters;9/1/2008, Vol. 93 Issue 9, p092507
Academic Journal
A technique for noninvasive monitoring of flow inside metallic enclosures using laser-based atomic magnetometry is introduced. The analyte is labeled via nuclear magnetization by magnets, thereby combining the polarization and encoding steps. No radiofrequency or audiofrequency pulses are involved. We demonstrate detection of flow inside an aluminum pipe with an inner diameter of 4.9 mm that has a constriction with a diameter of 1.6 mm and a length of 6.4 mm. The results agree with a model of spin density and relaxation indicating that our technique allows for fast, quantitative, and noninvasive diagnostics of flow with potential applications discussed below.


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