Category Archives: News

AEDGE paper accepted in EJP

Our paper AEDGE: Atomic Experiment for Dark Matter and Gravity Exploration in Space has just been accepted in EJP!


We propose in this White Paper a concept for a space experiment using cold atoms to search for ultra-light dark matter, and to detect gravitational waves in the frequency range between the most sensitive ranges of LISA and the terrestrial LIGO/Virgo/KAGRA/INDIGO experiments. This interdisciplinary experiment, called Atomic Experiment for Dark Matter and Gravity Exploration (AEDGE), will also complement other planned searches for dark matter, and exploit synergies with other gravitational wave detectors. We give examples of the extended range of sensitivity to ultra-light dark matter offered by AEDGE, and how its gravitational-wave measurements could explore the assembly of super-massive black holes, first-order phase transitions in the early universe and cosmic strings. AEDGE will be based upon technologies now being developed for terrestrial experiments using cold atoms, and will benefit from the space experience obtained with, e.g., LISA and cold atom experiments in microgravity.

ELGAR featured in

Our ELGAR proposal to build a ground-based detector for Gravitational Waves has been featured in “Physicists from across Europe have revealed plans for a huge underground gravitational-wave observatory that, if funded, could be operational by the mid-2030s. The European Laboratory for Gravitational and Atom-interferometric Research (ELGAR) could be located in either France or Italy and would cost around €200m to build. Those involved in the project have now applied for European funding to carry out a detailed design and costing for the facility.”

White paper on: Exploring the Foundations of the Universe with Space Tests of the Equivalence Principle

We have just published on a white paper on the scientific motivation for future space tests of the equivalence principle, to explore some of the big questions in physics (e.g. Equivalence Principle, Dark Matter and Gravitational Waves) using matter-wave interferometry, especially in space.

We discuss two possible mission scenarios, one based on quantum technologies, the other on electrostatic accelerometers, that could reach that goal are briefly discussed. We propose experiments to test the universality of free fall, at the level of 10−17 or better.

Download pdf

Saurabh will defend his thesis 12/7/2019

Πρόσκληση σε Δημόσια Παρουσίαση της Διδακτορικής Διατριβής του

κ. Saurabh Pandey

(Σύμφωνα με το άρθρο 41 του Ν. 4485/2017)

Την Παρασκευή 12 Ιουλίου 2019 και ώρα 10:00 στην αίθουσα Τηλεεκπαίδευσης στο κτήριο Τμήματος Μαθηματικών και Εφαρμοσμένων Μαθηματικών, Πανεπιστημίου Κρήτης, θα γίνει η δημόσια παρουσίαση και υποστήριξη της Διδακτορικής Διατριβής του υποψήφιου διδάκτορα του Τμήματος Επιστήμης και Τεχνολογίας Υλικών κ. Saurabh Pandey με θέμα:

«Guided Matter-Wave Interferometry»


Atom interferometry is an extremely sensitive and accurate means of measuring time, gravity, rotation, acceleration, magnetic gradients, and even fundamental physical constants. In particular for rotation sensing, these atomic systems are 10 billion times more sensitive than the optical gyroscopes, for an equal area of the interferometer loop. For practical applications such as satellite-free navigation, the ultracold atom based gyroscopes have to become portable and compact, without compromising their sensitivity.  This can be achieved by trapping and manipulation of ultracold atoms in smooth, area-enclosing waveguides. A major challenge, so far, has been the lack of ability to guide the trapped atomic wave-packets over long distances at relatively high speeds.

I will present excitation-free transport of Bose-Einstein condensates (BECs) at hypersonic speeds in magnetic time-averaged adiabatic potential (TAAP) rings traps. For the first time, matter-waves are transported for a record distance of 40 cm at hypersonic speeds without detecting any extra excitation when compared to the static case. The extreme smoothness of TAAP rings is demonstrated via the propagation of ultracold 87Rb atoms in ring waveguides. In addition, I studied atom optics with moving BECs in flat ring waveguides, to enable long distance guiding, and ultralow temperatures of the trapped atoms. I implemented an optimal cooling technique to achieve compact BEC guiding for seconds, and the effective BEC interaction energy was lowered by a factor of 30. These demonstrations provide a new platform to realize highly sensitive, miniaturized cold-atom-based gyroscopes, and investigate fundamental questions.