Abstract

We discuss the precise zero adjustment of a balanced differential-mode polarimeter containing an atomic sample for dark-field detection of a small atomic parity-violation anisotropy odd under reversal of an applied E field. Our sample is endowed with an E-even parity-conserving anisotropy, possibly large, but oriented to produce no imbalance. An imbalance arises both from defects in the preparation of the sample and from small probe-beam anisotropies coupling with those of the sample. An adjustment procedure allows identification and reduction of each defect. The residual E-even imbalance is maintained at the noise level by active compensation.

© 1997 Optical Society of America

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