Progress in a Vacuum Weight Search Experiment

Year: 2020

Authors: Gagliardi G., Avino S., et al.

Autors Affiliation: CNR-INO

Abstract: We present the status of the art of the Archimedes experiment, devoted to measuring the debated interaction of quantum vacuum fluctuations and gravity. The method is essentially the weighing of the transition energy of a layered superconductor where the contribution of vacuum energy to the transition energy is expected to be relevant. The transition is obtained by modulating the temperature of the superconducting sample at a frequency of about 10 mHz and the expected change of weight is measured with a suitably designed high sensitivity cryogenic beam balance. In this paper, we present an overview of the experiment, discussing the expected signal to be measured, and presenting in particular the result of a prototype balance operated in our present laboratory. In the frequency range of the measurement, the sensitivity is affected mainly by seismic, thermal, sensor, and control noise. We discuss these points showing in particular the design of the cryogenic apparatus, the final balance, and the quiet seismic site that will host the final measurement.


Volume: 2      Pages from: 1  to: 13

KeyWords: quantum fluctuations; gravity; vacuum energy; Casimir energy
DOI: 10.3390/physics2010001