Scientific Results

Matter wave explorer of gravity (MWXG)

Year: 2009

Authors: Ertmer W., Schubert C., Wendrich T., Gilowski M., Zaiser M., Zoest T. v., Rasel E., Bordé Ch. J., Clairon Landragin A., Laurent P., Lemonde P., Santarelli G., Schleich W., Cataliotti F.S., Inguscio M., Poli N., Sorrentino F., Modugno C., Tino G.M., Gill P., Klein H., Margolis H., Reynaud S., Salomon C., Lambrecht A., Peik E., Jentsch C., Johann U., Rathke A., Bouyer P., Cacciapuoti L., De Natale P., Christophe B., Foulon B., Touboul P., Maleki L., Yu N., Turyshev S.G., Anderson J.D., Schmidt-Kaler F., Walser R., Vigué J., Büchner M., Angonin M.-C., Delva P., Tourrenc P., Bingham R., Kent B., Wicht A., Wang L.J., Bongs K., Dittus Hj., Lämmerzahl C., Theil S., Sengstock K., Peters A., Müller T., Arndt M., Iess L., Bondu F., Brillet A., Samain E., Chiofalo M. L., Levi F., Calonico D.

Autors Affiliation: Leibniz Univ Hannover, Inst Quantenopt, D-30167 Hannover, Germany; Observ Paris, CNRS, LNE SYRTE, F-75014 Paris, France; Univ Ulm, Inst Quantenopt, Ulm, Germany; Univ Paris 06, ERGA, Paris, France; Univ Florence, INFN, LENS, Florence, Italy; Natl Phys Lab, Teddington TW11 0LW, Middx, England; UPMC, ENS, LKB, Paris, France; Ecole Normale Super, Dept Phys, F-75231 Paris, France; Phys Tech Bundesanstalt, D-3300 Braunschweig, Germany; EADS Astrium, Friedrichshafen, Germany; Inst Opt Theor & Appl, CNRS, Lab Charles Fabry, Palaiseau, France; Estec, ESA, Noordwijk, Netherlands; INOA CNR, Florence, Italy; Off Natl Etud & Rech Aerosp, Chatillon, France; NASA, Jet Prop Lab, Pasadena, CA USA; Global Aerosp Corp, El Segundo, CA USA; Univ Ulm, Quanten Informat Verarbeitung, Ulm, Germany; Univ Toulouse 3, LCAR, F-31062 Toulouse, France; CNRS, Toulouse, France; Rutherford Appleton Lab, Didcot OX11 0QX, Oxon, England; Univ Dusseldorf, Inst Expt Phys, Dusseldorf, Germany; Univ Birmingham, Birmingham, W Midlands, England; Univ Bremen, ZARM, Bremen, Germany; Univ Hamburg, Inst Laserphys, Hamburg, Germany; Humboldt Univ, Berlin, Germany; Natl Univ Singapore, Singapore 117548, Singapore; Univ Vienna, Vienna, Austria; Univ Roma La Sapienza, Dipartimento Ingn Aerosp & Astronaut, Rome, Italy; CERGA, OCA, Grasse, France; CNISM, Pisa, Italy; Scuola Normale Super Pisa, INFN, Pisa, Italy; Inst Electtrotecn Nazl Galileo Ferraris, Turin, Italy

Abstract: In response to ESA\’s Call for proposals of 5 March 2007 of the COSMIC VISION 2015-2025 plan of the ESA science programme, we propose a M-class satellite mission to test of the Equivalence Principle in the quantum domain by investigating the extended free fall of matter waves instead of macroscopic bodies as in the case of GAUGE, MICROSCOPE or STEP. The satellite, called MatterWave Explorer of Gravity, will carry an experiment to test gravity, namely the measurement of the equal rate of free fall with various isotopes of distinct atomic species with precision cold atom interferometry in the vicinity of the earth. This will allow for a first quantum test the Equivalence Principle with spin polarised particles and with pure fermionic and bosonic atomic ensembles. Due to the space conditions, the free fall of Rubidium and Potassium isotopes will be compared with a maximum accelerational sensitivity of 5 center dot 10 (-aEuro parts per thousand 16) m/s(2) corresponding to an accuracy of the test of the Equivalence Principle of 1 part in 10(16). Besides the primary scientific goal, the quantum test of the Equivalence Principle, the mission can be extended to provide additional information about the gravitational field of the earth or for testing theories of fundamental processes of decoherence which are investigated by various theory groups in the context of quantum gravity phenomenology. In this proposal we present in detail the mission objectives and the technical aspects of the proposed mission.

Journal/Review: EXPERIMENTAL ASTRONOMY (PRINT)

Volume: 23 (2)      Pages from: 611  to: 649

More Information: The QUANTUS-Team acknowledges support from the DLR under the contract 50 WM 0508 and contract DLR 50 WM 0346.
DOI: 10.1007/s10686-008-9125-6

Citations: 24
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