The fine structure of the neutral nitrogen-vacancy center in diamond

Michael S.J. Barson, Elmars Krausz, Neil B. Manson, Marcus W. Doherty

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13 Citations (Scopus)


The nitrogen-vacancy (NV) center in diamond is a widely utilized system due to its useful quantum properties. Almost all research focuses on the negative charge state (NV-) and comparatively little is understood about the neutral charge state (NV0). This is surprising as the charge state often fluctuates between NV0 and NV- during measurements. There are potentially under-utilized technical applications that could take advantage of NV0, either by improving the performance of NV0 or utilizing NV- directly. However, the fine structure of NV0 has not been observed. Here, we rectify this lack of knowledge by performing magnetic circular dichroism measurements that quantitatively determine the fine structure of NV0. The observed behavior is accurately described by spin-Hamiltonians in the ground and excited states with the ground state yielding a spin-orbit coupling of λ = 2.24 ± 0.05 GHz and a orbital g-factor of 0.0186 ± 0.0005. The reasons why this fine structure has not been previously measured are discussed and strain-broadening is concluded to be the likely reason.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1985-1991
Number of pages7
Issue number11
Publication statusPublished - 1 Nov 2019
Externally publishedYes


  • center
  • color
  • diamond
  • fine structure
  • magnetic circular dichroism (MCD)
  • neutral
  • nitrogen-vacancy (NV)
  • spectroscopy
  • spin-orbit

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