Current Projects:

Quantum Physics Platform CDF Study (QPPF)

In 2016, the European Space Agency (ESA) issued a Call for New Science Ideas, and we submitted the MAQRO proposal as a new Science Idea. In April 2017, ESA identified three new science ideas (link), one of them being the investigation of quantum decoherence with a focus on the boundaries of and relationship between quantum and classical physics. As a result, a CDF study will start on May 15th, 2018, based on the MAQRO mission proposal. This will be a great opportunity to shape the community supporting such experiments and to redefine the proposal to do such experiments in space more accurately by collaborating with a team of space engineers at ESA.

QuantumShield (FFG Project No. 865996)

Project funded by the Austrian Research Promotion Agency in the Austrian Space Applications Programme (ASAP) 2018-2020 to perform finite-element simulations of passive and active cooling approaches for the MAQRO mission proposal. Achieving low temperatures (<=20K) in the experimental volume is a key requirement for achieving MAQRO’s science goals.

ULE-Cavity-Access (FFG Project No. 854036)

Project funded by the Austrian Research Promotion Agency in the Austrian Space Applications Programme (ASAP) 2016-2019 to increase the technological readiness of key technologies for testing the foundations of physics in space as proposed in the MAQRO mission proposal. In particular, the goal has been to implement an adhesively bonded fiber-coupled high-finesse cavity that is aligned at room temperature but operated at cryogenic temperatures at about 20K. This is a core piece of technology for the MAQRO mission proposal.

Past Projects:

MAQROsteps (FFG Project No. 840089)

Project funded by the Austrian Research Promotion Agency in the Austrian Space Applications Programme (ASAP) 2013-2015 to increase the technological readiness of key technologies for testing the foundations of physics with macroscopic quantum resonators (MAQRO).

NanoTrapS (ESA contract 4000105799/127NL/Cbi)

In this project (“Trapped nanoparticles for space experiments”), R. Kaltenbaek and a team of M. Arndt investigated novel mechanisms for sources of test particles for high-mass matter-wave interferometry in space.

MQES (ESA contract Po P5401000400)

In this project (“Macroscopic quantum resonators in space”), R. Kaltenbaek and a team of M. Aspelmeyer investigated the scientific and technical requirements of possible quantum experiments in a space environment using quantum optomechanics.