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Cooling the Center-of-Mass Motion of a Diamond Nanocrystal in a Magneto-Gravitational Trap
A magneto-gravitational trap for micro/nanometer sized diamagnetic particles, such as diamond nanocrystals, is tested and characterized. After exploring various other systems, such as a suspended graphene beam and an optical trap, this magneto-gravitational nanomechanical trapping system for diamond with nitrogen-vacancy (NV) centers presents unique advantages for experiments in fundamental quantum mechanics. Those include, for example, the generation of large quantum superposition states and tests of quantum gravity. Features are demonstrated for this system, such as stable and passive levitation from atmospheric pressure to high vacuum, low resonant frequencies and damping rates, and cooling of the center-of-mass motions to below 1 K. The construction of the trap, vacuum system, optics, and motion detection electronics are described in detail.
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