The University of Nottingham


The proposed project requires expertise in various technological and scientific aspects. It combines a range of topics in order to develop technologically relevant quantum sensors, which span ultra-cold atom technology, matter wave interferometry, multi-particle quantum dynamics, micro-fabrication technology, photonics, and portable systems design. Only the availability of expertise in all these areas can ensure a successful implementation of the envisioned research programme. Our international team was formed to cover all these aspects in a manageably sized consortium of five academic partner institutions. The two UK institutions in this consortium form the Midlands Ultracold Atom Research Centre (MUARC, formed by BHAM & UNOTT), and we are certain that the chosen constellation ensures efficient communication and short reaction times.

IESL acts as the  coordinator of the MatterWave project. They will focus on rf-dressed time averaged potentials (TAAP). Experimental tests of ultra-cold gases and investigations of interacting gases in TAAP will be performed. IESL will advice the other partners on TAAP implementations and contribute to the theoretical work in this context. Forth is also the leader of the Dressed state matter waveguides (WP2)

The University of Nottingham

The experimental group in Nottingham will be the centre for the combina­tion of the developed technologies. A dedicated atom chip setup will be build, with a particular focus on portability and integration of radio-fre­quency dressed potentials. UNOTT will interface with BGU and BHAM regarding suitable atom chip development and portable electronic and optical infrastructure. The experimental group at UNOTT will lead WP3 and contribute to WP2 & 4. UNOTT will perform studies of state-dependent potentials, develop schemes for miniaturizing smooth TAAP potentials together with IESL-FORTH, compare the different approaches towards functional chip-based matter wave interferometers and implement portable technology.

The group holds a wide range of expertise including theory and experiment of quantum optics and atom physics as well as material science and fabrication techniques for the manufacturing of high quality atom chips. The first task of the group in this project will be to design and manufacture advanced chips for atom interferometry. The group holds all the required expertise such as high quality lithography for smooth potentials, high quality planarization for multi layer chips, photonics for light-matter interaction, and special materials for low decoherence. The second task will be to develop atom optical elements from static magnetic and electric fields. The group has conducted in depth numerical simulations of such elements and has finalised their design. Such elements could become a part of an inertial sensor as described in the group’s publication [1]. Additional tasks will involve theoretical simulation of many body effects on interferometers, affect of noise on interferometers, and photonics for interferometers. Ben-Gurion will lead WP3

The CNR group, leaded by Andrea Trombettoni, will perform a theoretical study of the interferometer schemes implemented by the experimental groups of the present proposal: in particular the group will study the Josephson dynamics of bosonic SQUID devices created in ring geometries with one or more (eventally moving) defects, with the goal to characterize and optimize the sensitivity of rotation and accelaration measurements. The effects of interactions will be treated using the Gross-Pitaevskii equation and, for strong interactions, using time-dependent many body techniques: on the last point a crucial contribution will come from the collaboration with Federico Becca, which has a long-standing experience in numerical techniques. Furthermore, the CNR group will strictly collaborate and coordinate the research activity with the Theory group in University of Nottingham, leaded by Igor Lesanovsky.

The University of Birmingham will develop the physics package surrounding the sensor  chip, i.e. lasers, electronics, vacuum cells and take part in the comparative evaluation tests of interferometry performance.

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