Longitudinal Relaxation in Solid 129Xe
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Solid xenon has been studied for many years by many prolific groups. The problem of longitudinal relaxation of solid 129Xe in particular is an interesting one because it is notoriously difficult: computationally due to its many-body nature, and experimentally because of its history of nonreproducibility. The wave function of a xenon atom in a lattice is not completely known because of the complexity of the system. In theory, if a correct xenon wave function is used and the correct relaxation mechanism is posited, the relaxation rates are calculable from first principles. At the time of this work, the leading model gives that longitudinal relaxation in the regime of 77–120 K is predominately caused by a spin-rotation interaction mediated by Raman-scattering of phonons.