Know RAMBO: Rice Advanced Magnet with Broadband Optics


With advent of nano-technology, almost every product manufactured these days is becoming faster, lighter, smaller and yet smarter. Gone are the days when first computer was developed which could only carry out a set of arithmetic and logical calculations and still was the size of a large room. Now days we can easily carry on our palm top. Following the same path, scientists of Rice University have pioneered a magnetic pulse generator that can be operated on a table top. The device is named as RAMBO.

What is RAMBO?

RAMBO is short for the Rice Advanced Magnet with Broadband Optics. It is a pioneer of Rice university scientists who have invented this powerful magnetic pulse generator that allows scientists to test materials in high magnetic fields over a table top. The device is created in the Rice lab of physicist Junichiro Kono in collaboration with Hiroyuki Nojiri at the Institute for Materials Research at Tohoku University in Sendai, Japan. The Details about RAMBO appeared online recently in the American Institute of Physics journal Review of Scientific Instruments.

What RAMBO does | Advantages of RAMBO?

As the name suggests, it is an advanced magnet with Broadband optics. It has the ability to combine ultra-strong magnetic fields and very short and intense optical pulses (combination of two extreme conditions). This allows the researchers to literally see the samples inside the magnet unlike those monster magnets which use long optical fibers to access the samples. So researchers need not use those big room-sized machines to carry out their experiments. RAMBO allows researchers to run experiments based on spectroscopy in pulsed magnetic field of up to 30 Tesla.

RAMBO has windows through which laser beams can be sent to the sample to collect the data at close range.” Researchers can collect real-time, high-resolution data in a system that couples high magnetic fields and low temperatures with direct optical access to the magnet’s core”, Kono said.

A new experiment can be run in a 30-tesla field every 10 minutes as opposed to field generators which require long waiting hours to cool down after each experiment at large laboratories. 

“High magnetic fields have been around for many years. Ultrafast spectroscopy has been around for many years. But this is the first combination of the two,” Kono said.

Working of RAMBO?

A sample plate is placed on a long sapphire cylinder which passes through the coil’s container and juts through one end of the magnet to place it directly at the centre of magnetic field.
The cylinder thus provides the direct window to the experiment; a port on other side of the coil container looks directly down upon the sample. For cooling, the coil is bathed in liquid nitrogen at around 80 kelvins. By adjusting the flow of liquid helium to the sapphire cylinder, the sample temperature can be controlled from about 10 K to room temperature.

According to Kono the campus is now able to do about 80 percent of the experiments that was done elsewhere and also there are many things that only we they do here, making it a unique system that doesn’t exist anywhere else in the world. Scientists working in different areas will now have to come up with new ideas just by knowing such a thing is possible.


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