Precision spectroscopy of a charged particle in an imperfect Penning trap

Lowell S. Brown*, Gerald Gabrielse

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

170 Scopus citations


The phenomenal accuracies achieved for the spectroscopy of single charged particles suspended in Penning traps has prompted this study of the imperfect Penning trap. The principal result is a new prescription for the cyclotron frequency in terms of the observable eigenfrequencies of the imperfect trap. The new prescription is completely insensitive to a misalignment of the magnetic field direction with the axis of the Penning electrodes, and it is also insensitive to the most significant imperfections in the electrostatic potential. These systematic effects can therefore be completely circumvented in measurements of the anomalous magnetic moments of the electron and positron, and also in experiments on protons and heavier ions where the effects are much larger.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)2423-2425
Number of pages3
JournalPhysical Review A
Issue number4
StatePublished - Jan 1 1982

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Physics and Astronomy(all)
  • Atomic and Molecular Physics, and Optics


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