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Negatively charged nitrogen-vacancy (NV) centers in diamond are promising magnetic field quantum sensors. Laser threshold magnetometry theory predicts improved NV center ensemble sensitivity via increased signal strength and magnetic field contrast. Here, we experimentally demonstrate laser threshold magnetometry. We use a macroscopic high-finesse laser cavity containing a highly NV-doped and low absorbing diamond gain medium that is pumped at 532 nm and resonantly seeded at 710 nm. This enables a 64% signal power amplification by stimulated emission. We test the magnetic field dependency of the amplification and thus demonstrate magnetic field-dependent stimulated emission from an NV center ensemble. This emission shows an ultrahigh contrast of 33% and a maximum output power in the milliwatt regime. The coherent readout of NV centers pave the way for novel cavity and laser applications of quantum defects and diamond NV magnetic field sensors with substantially improved sensitivity for the health, research, and mining sectors.


This work was originally published in Science Advances available at DOI: 10.1126/sciadv.abn7192

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