Charge Stability and Charge-State-Based Spin Readout of Shallow Nitrogen-Vacancy Centers in Diamond

Rakshyakar Giri*, Rasmus Ho̷y Jensen, Deepak Khurana, Juanita Bocquel, Ilya P. Radko, Johannes Lang, Christian Osterkamp, Fedor Jelezko, Kirstine Berg-So̷rensen, Ulrik L. Andersen, Alexander Huck*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articleResearchpeer-review

36 Downloads (Pure)


Spin-based applications of the negatively charged nitrogen-vacancy (NV) center in diamonds require an efficient spin readout. One approach is the spin-to-charge conversion (SCC), relying on mapping the spin states onto the neutral (NV0) and negative (NV–) charge states followed by a subsequent charge readout. With high charge-state stability, SCC enables extended measurement times, increasing precision and minimizing noise in the readout compared to the commonly used fluorescence detection. Nanoscale sensing applications, however, require shallow NV centers within a few nanometers distance from the surface where surface related effects might degrade the NV charge state. In this article, we investigate the charge state initialization and stability of single NV centers implanted ≈5 nm below the surface of a flat diamond plate. We demonstrate the SCC protocol on four shallow NV centers suitable for nanoscale sensing, obtaining a reduced readout noise of 5–6 times the spin-projection noise limit. We investigate the general applicability of the SCC for shallow NV centers and observe a correlation between the NV charge-state stability and readout noise. Coating the diamond with glycerol improves both the charge initialization and stability. Our results reveal the influence of the surface-related charge environment on the NV charge properties and motivate further investigations to functionalize the diamond surface with glycerol or other materials for charge-state stabilization and efficient spin-state readout of shallow NV centers suitable for nanoscale sensing.
Original languageEnglish
JournalACS Applied Electronic Materials
Issue number12
Pages (from-to)6603–6610
Publication statusPublished - 2023


Dive into the research topics of 'Charge Stability and Charge-State-Based Spin Readout of Shallow Nitrogen-Vacancy Centers in Diamond'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this