The dc-superconducting quantum interference device (SQUID) is a low-noise converter from magnetic flux to voltage which can have, in principle, an energy sensitivity near the quantum limit of ℏ/2.
A critical parameter for the ideal performance is the device inductance, which must be kept as small as possible. Minimizing the SQUID inductance, however, is a major concern for a practical device; this requirement implies a small SQUID ring and hence magnetic coupling with an external signal is more difficult to achieve. Here we present an original scheme (called multiwasher) to circumvent this problem, and its implementation in an all-refractory thin-film device. Our scheme not only provides good magnetic coupling with a large input coil (0.5 μH) and very low SQUID inductance, but also shielding from outside uniform fields, such as those generated by ambient disturbances. The measured coupled spectral energy sensitivity in the white region at about 1 kHz is 28ℏ at 4.2 K and 5.5ℏ in a pumped helium bath at 0.9 K. The flux noise spectral density at 0.1 Hz and 0.9 K is Φn = 1×10−6 Φ0/.
© 1998 American Institute of Physics.