Best articles

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“Orientation independent room-temperature optical 13C hyperpolarization in powdered diamond”, A. Ajoy, K. Liu, R. Nazaryan, X. Lv, B. Safvati, G. Wang, D. Arnold, G. Li, A. Lin, P. Raghavan, E. Druga, D. Pagliero, J.A. Reimer, D. Suter, C.A. Meriles, A. Pines, submitted. 

Dynamic polarization of nuclear spins via optically pumped NVs is an intriguing route to enhanced-sensitivity NMR but applications have been limited to single crystals. Here we attain record levels of 13C spin polarization in powdered diamond under ambient conditions. These results pave the way towards the use of hyperpolarized diamond particles as imaging contrast agents for biosensing and, ultimately, for the hyperpolarization of nuclear spins in arbitrary liquids brought in contact with their surface.


“Multi-spin-assisted optical pumping of bulk 13C nuclear spin polarization in diamond”, D. Pagliero, K.R. Koteswara Rao, P.R. Zangara, S. Dhomkar, H.H. Wong, A. Abril, N. Aslam, A. Parker, J. King, C.E. Avalos, A. Ajoy, J. Wrachtrup, A. Pines, C.A. Meriles, submitted. Also available as arXiv:1711.07576.

One of the most remarkable properties of the nitrogen-vacancy (NV) center in diamond is that optical illumination initializes its electronic spin almost completely, a feature that can be exploited to polarize other spin species in their proximity to record levels under ambient conditions. Here we show 13C spin pumping near 51 mT takes place via a multi-spin cross relaxation process involving the NV spin and the electronic and nuclear spins of neighboring P1 centers.


“On-demand generation of neutral and negatively-charged silicon-vacancy centers in diamond”, S. Dhomkar, P. Zangara, C.A. Meriles, submitted.

The silicon-vacancy (SiV) center in diamond is emerging as a new platform for nano-photonics, information processing, and sensing but the controlled conversion between its most common charge states (negative and neutral) has so far proven elusive. Here we demonstrate on demand generation of SiV- and SiV0 over large areas using laser excitation of variable wavelength and intensity.


“Near-deterministic activation of single-photon emitters in hexagonal boron nitride”, N. Proscia, Z. Shotan, H. Jayakumar, P. Reddy, M. Dollar, A. Alkauskas, M.W. Doherty, C.A. Meriles, V.M. Menon, submitted.

We demonstrate strain-induced activation of single-photon emitters in hexagonal boron nitride into a bright state through charge trapping in deformation potentials. The process is nearly 100% efficient yielding stable emitters at room temperature over arbitrarily shaped spatial patterns.


KikuchietalAn_ThumbnailFig“Long-distance excitation of nitrogen-vacancy centers in diamond via propagating surface spin waves”, D. Kikuchi, D. Prananto, K. Hayashi, A. Laraoui, N. Mizuochi, M. Hatano, E. Saitoh, Y. Kim, C.A. Meriles, T. An, Appl. Phys. Express 10, 103004 (2017). Also available as arXiv:1708.00596.

Coherent communication over mesoscale distances is a necessary condition for the application of solid-state spin qubits to scalable quantum information processing. As an initial step in this direction, here we make use of room-temperature spin waves to mediate the interaction between the microwave field from an antenna and the spin of an NV center 3.6 mm away.


Screen Shot 2017-03-05 at 12.57.00 PM“Room temperature, optically-driven tunnelling and back-tunnelling of defect-trapped electrons”, S. Dhomkar, P. Zangara, J. Henshaw, N.B. Manson, M.W. Doherty, A. Alkauskas, C.A. Meriles, submitted.

We work at low optical excitation rates to expose electron tunneling and back-tunneling between NVs and close-by nitrogen impurities. The formation of nanoscale patterns of trapped charge leads to a history-dependent NV fluorescence response. Our data also suggest that electron tunneling is spin-selective.


Screen Shot 2017-03-25 at 5.43.24 PM“Non-volatile nuclear spin memory enables sensor-unlimited nanoscale spectroscopy of small spin clusters”, M. Pfender, N. Aslam, H. Sumiya, S. Onoda, P. Neumann, J. Isoya, C.A. Meriles, J. Wrachtrup, Nature Commun. 8, 834 (2017). Available as arXiv: 1610.05675v1.

In nanoscale metrology applications, measurements are commonly limited by the performance of the sensor. Here we use a hybrid quantum-classical sensor device to demonstrate  NMR spectral resolution of single spins down to 13 Hz. This work paves the way for high resolution NMR spectroscopy on nanoscopic quantum systems down to the single level.


shotanetal_thumbnail“Photo-induced modification of single photon emitters in hexagonal boron nitride”, Z. Shotan, H. Jayakumar, C.R. Considine, M. Mackoit, H. Fedder, J. Wrachtrup, A. Alkauskas, M.W. Doherty, V.M. Menon, C.A. Meriles, ACS Photonics  3, 2490 (2016) . 

We uncover singular phenomenology in the emission of individual fluorescent defects in boron nitride exposed to suitable laser pulses.


Screen Shot 2016-05-05 at 7.27.02 PMLong-term data storage in diamond”, S. Dhomkar, J. Henshaw, H. Jayakumar, C.A. Meriles, Science Adv. 2, e1600911 (2016). Available as arXiv:1610.09022

We use NV centers in diamond to demonstrate high-density, three-dimensional read/writing of classical information. We also show how nuclear spins can serve as ancillary memories for sub-diffraction data encoding.


NV_ElectronBus“Towards a room-temperature spin quantum bus in diamond via optical spin injection, transport and detection”, M.W. Doherty, C.A. Meriles, A. Alkauskas, H. Fedder, M.J. Sellars, N.B. Manson, Phys. Rev. X, Phys. Rev. X 6, 041035 (2016). Available as arXiv:1511.08559.

We discuss the use of charge carriers to generate entanglement between remote nuclear spin qubits in diamond at room temperature


Screen Shot 2016-05-05 at 7.24.14 PM“Optical patterning of trapped charge in nitrogen-doped diamond”, H. Jayakumar, J. Henshaw, S. Dhomkar, D. Pagliero, A. Laraoui, N.B. Manson, R. Albu, M.W. Doherty, C.A. Meriles, Nature Commun. 7, 12660 (2016). Also available as arXiv:1609.03085.

We investigate the diffusion and trapping of charge carriers photo-ionized from NVs and P1 centers in diamond. We observe the formation of intriguing patters that we reproduce semi-quantitatively via a model of coupled master equations.


NV_ThermalSensing2“Imaging thermal conductivity with nanoscale resolution using a scanning spin probe”, A. Laraoui, H. Aycock-Rizzo, X. Lu, Y. Gao, E. Riedo, C.A. Meriles, Nature Commun. 6, 8954 (2015). Available as arXiv:1511.06916.

We use nanoparticle-hosted NVs attached to a thermal AFM tip as a local probe to measure the thermal conductivity of heterogeneous systems with nanometer resolution.


Screen Shot 2016-05-05 at 6.10.25 PM“Probing molecular dynamics at the nanoscale via an individual paramagnetic center”, T.M. Staudacher, N. Raatz, S. Pezzagna, J. Meijer, F. Reinhard, C.A. Meriles, J. Wrachtrup, Nature Commun. 6, 8527 (2015). Available as arXiv:1507.05921.

We work with NV centers nanometers below the crystal surface to probe the near-surface dynamics of molecules from organic systems including solid films and liquids. For the latter group, we manage to separately identify adsorbed and freely diffusing molecules.


 NV5“Dynamic nuclear spin polarization of liquids and gases in contact with nanostructured diamond”, D. Abrams, M.E. Trusheim, D. Englund, M.D. Shattuck, C.A. Meriles, Nano Letters 14, 2471 (2014).

We discuss the use of near-surface NV centers to polarize the nuclear spins from organic molecules within arbitrary fluids brought in direct contact with the diamond surface.


NV_Nanoparticles1“Scalable Fabrication of High Purity Diamond Nanocrystals with Long-Spin-Coherence Nitrogen Vacancy Centers”, M.E. Trusheim, L. Li, A. Laraoui, E.H. Chen, O. Gaathon, H. Bakhru, T. Schroeder, C.A. Meriles, D.R. Englund, Nano Letters 14, 32 (2014).

We demonstrate record-long spin coherence lifetimes for NVs within engineered, high-purity diamond nanoparticles.


NV_P1CenterPolarization1“Approach to dark spin cooling in a diamond nanocrystal”, A. Laraoui, C.A. Meriles, ACS Nano 7, 3403 (2013). Available as arxiv:1703.03988

We demonstrate efficient spin polarization transfer from NVs to P1 centers in their vicinity. Further, using the NVs as a local probe, we determine that the P1 center spin polarization reaches up to 50% within a 10 nm volume centered at the NV.


NV_Correlations1“High-Resolution Correlation Spectroscopy of 13C Spins Near a Nitrogen-Vacancy Center in Diamond”, A. Laraoui, F. Dolde, C. Burk, F. Reinhard, J. Wrachtrup, C.A. Meriles, Nature Commun. 4, 1651 (2013). Available as arXiv:1305.1536.

We introduce a new NV-based technique to probe weakly coupled nuclear spins. Unlike prior approaches, this method exploits the long NV spin-lattice relaxation times to attain highly-resolved NMR spectra from the nuclear spin noise.


NV_ProtonSensing2“Nuclear magnetic resonance spectroscopy on a (5nm)3 volume of liquid and solid samples”, T. Staudacher, F. Shi, S. Pezzagna, J. Meijer, J. Du, C.A. Meriles, F. Reinhard, J. Wrachtrup, Science 339, 561 (2013).

We demonstrate for the first time detection the use of shallow NVs to probe nuclear spins from an arbitrary organic system deposited on the diamond surface.


NV_DetectingP1Centers“Nitrogen-Vacancy-assisted magnetometry of paramagnetic centers in an individual diamond nanocrystal”, A. Laraoui, J.S. Hodges, C.A. Meriles, Nano Letters 12, 3477 (2012).

We use double resonance techniques to probe P1 centers contained in an individual diamond nanocrystal.


OPinGalliumArsenide1“Optically re-writable patterns of nuclear magnetization in Gallium Arsenide”, J.P. King, Y. Li, C.A. Meriles, J.A. Reimer, Nature Communications 3, 918 (2012).

We use the large magnetic field gradient to image the nuclear spin polarization induced by optical pumping of a gallium arsenide wafer. We show that low illumination intensities generate a non-monotonic polarization profile where nuclear spins polarize positively or negatively, depending on the distance to the sample surface.


FaradayRotationInLiquids2“Magneto-optical contrast in liquid-state optically-detected NMR spectroscopy”, D. Pagliero, C.A. Meriles, Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. USA 108, 19510 (2011).

We use time-resolved Faraday rotation at 10 T to demonstrate for the first time chemical-shift-resolved NMR of arbitrary solvents.


FaradayRotationInLiquids1“Time-resolved optically-detected NMR of fluids at high-magnetic field”, D. Pagliero, W. Dong, D. Sakellariou, C.A. Meriles, J. Chem. Phys. 133, 154505 (2010).

We demonstrate optical detection of magnetic resonance at high-magnetic field using time-resolved Faraday rotation.


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