Newsletter #2/2021

Welcome to the QTSpace Newsletter

We are glad to announce the upcoming UniKORN seminar block on Space-based tests with optomechanics with talks on the Wednesdays 14th, 21st, and 28th of April at 2pm BST. Please find the details of the first talk, along with the full abstract for the block below and check our ResearchSeminars profile for the details of the upcoming talks.

Talk: Testing quantum physics in space: challenges and progress
Speaker: Rainer Kaltenbaeck
Date: 14th of April 2021
Time: 2pm BST
YouTube live-stream link:
Abstract: Since its inception in 2010, significant progress has been made in the development of the MAQRO mission proposal to build a dedicated satellite for testing the foundations of quantum physics. In 2017, the European Space Agency (ESA) chose this as one of its New Science Ideas for future missions, and it conducted a detailed study at their Concurrent Design Facility (CDF) on the technical feasibility of a future quantum physics platform (QPPF) based on the MAQRO mission concept. The conclusion of the study was that such a mission is feasible, in principle, but that three critical, technical challenges have to be met before a potential future implementation. Here, we will discuss these challenges, recent progress, as well as planned and on-going research activities to meet these challenges.

First talk: Satellite-based Quantum Communications
Speaker: Jasminder Sidhu
Abstract: Global quantum communications is important for distributed quantum information processing over long-distances, and entanglement-enabled technologies. However, range limitations of fibre optical transmission restricts the reach of networked quantum technologies. Satellite-based quantum communication provides a practical and realisable route to intercontinental quantum networking, and is rapidly being developed. In this talk, we briefly review these developments and highlight some of the unique challenges in space-based quantum communications.
Second talk: Cooled nanoparticles in a drop tower
Speaker: Christian Vogt
Abstract: Levitated optomechanics based on levitated silica nanospheres is a promising tool for force measurements and observation of the quantum mechanical behavior of "large" masses. Especially the latter benefits strongly from a space environment, as proposed in MAQRO mission. Nevertheless, space-based experiments rely on rigorous preparation and need as much validation of the proposed techniques as possible, including under weightlessness conditions. Our approach is to operate a system with parametrically cooled nanoparticles in the drop tower in Bremen, providing 4.7 s of weightlessness time, 9.3 s in catapult mode. Beyond demonstrating feasibility, such an experiment allows for the realization of even slower nanoparticles, increased force sensitivity, or even "macroscopic" interference. This talk will discuss the various ideas for drop tower applications, its benefits for ground-based experiments, and how we can support these with our findings on optically trapped neutral atoms in the drop tower.
Third talk: Cold Atom Interferometry in Space
Speaker: Stephan Tobias Seidel
Abstract: Cold Atom Interferometers (CAI) are quantum sensors based on the interference of matterwaves that allow for measurements of accelerations and rotations with a high accuracy. The realisation of CAIs in microgravity allows to drastically increase the free interrogation time of the atoms in the CAI compared to measurements in gravity. This in turn, increases the sensitivity of the measurement as it scales quadratically with the free interrogation time. This talk will briefly discuss the principles of CAIs, their applications in space and the current state of microgravity demonstrations.
Date: 21st of April 2021
Time: 2pm BST
YouTube live-stream link:

Panel discussion: Space-based test with optomechanics
Speakers: Mike Cruise, Chris Lee, James Endicott, Daniel Oi (University of Birmingham, Space Academic Network, Open University, University of Strathclyde)
Date: 28th of April 2021
Time: 2pm BST
YouTube live-stream link:

QTSpace is supported by COST.
Manager: Angelo Bassi, Strada Costiera 11, 34151, Trieste - ITALY