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Laser measurement science in gravitational physics

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  • UserFelipe Guzman (Center for Applied Space Technology and Microgravity (ZARM) & German Aerospace Center)
  • ClockMonday 24 October 2016, 13:00-14:00
  • HousePhysics West 117.

If you have a question about this talk, please contact Sean McGee.

Coherent light enables length measurements of exquisite sensitivity that lie at the core of fascinating observations in fundamental and quantum physics, astrophysics, geodesy and measurement science. In particular, observations from the Laser Interferometer Gravitational-Wave Observatory (LIGO) over the past year not only confirmed crucial gravitational physics effects, but have now also officially launched the era of Gravitational Wave Astronomy and Multi-Messenger observations. Similar laser-interferometric measurements have been demonstrated and are now flying on LISA Pathfinder, exceeding expectations and paving the way for a spaceborne Gravitational Wave Observatory that will allow us to survey the gravitational universe otherwise inaccessible to us from ground.

Moreover, GRACE follow-on will continue to provide valuable information about fluctuations of the Earth’s gravitational field to the geophysical and climatology science community starting early 2018, whose observations will be greatly enhanced by interspacecraft laser radiometric measurements.

In the area of cavity optomechanics and novel compact and integrated photonics, the combination of low-loss devices and optomechanically coupled coherent light fields enables us to reach unprecedented measurement accuracies near the quantum sensing limit, which are of relevance in applications such as Atom Interferometers, Gravimeters, and particularly broadband inertial sensing. I will discuss the advances and implementation aspects of spaceborne laser measurements for gravitational physics and novel optomechanical inertial sensing technologies that have been the focus of my research over the last few years.

This talk is part of the Astrophysics Talks Series series.

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