- Conference date: 31 Aug - 4 Sept 1998
- Location: Asilomar, California (USA)
The Penning trap mass spectrometer (PTMS) at the University of Washington has been rebuilt into a new state-of-the-art magnet/cryostat system with external Helmholtz compensation coils (controlled by a nearby flux-gate sensor). This system gives a total magnetic shielding factor of (which includes the effects of a passive internal flux-stabilizing coil supplied by the manufacturer). When the new magnet/cryostat is fitted with a system to control its boil-off pressure, the typical temporal field stability is ∼−0.017(2) ppb/h. The ultimate resolution of this improved spectrometer is expected to exceed 0.020 ppb with 100 hours of data using a single ion. The comparison of a ion with a ion suggests that the spectrometer’s accuracy may indeed match its resolution. To demonstrate the spectrometer’s improved performance over its previous version, the cyclotron frequency of a single proton is compared to the corresponding frequency of a single ion, yielding a determination of the proton’s atomic mass given by The primary systematic error (overcome in this case) is due to a position sensitivity within the non-uniform magnetic field, enhanced by the electrostatic trapping potentials of these ions which differ by a factor of three. A residual limitation to the overall field stability appears to be due to a long-term temperature-dependent temporal wander in the magnetic field.
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