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Testing the Large-Scale Limit of Quantum Mechanics

Objective

Microscopic systems can be prepared in quantum configurations with no classical counterpart. Such a possibility seems precluded when the 'complexity' of the system grows towards the macroscopic domain: so far we have no evidence of non-classical behavior of the macroscopic world. Why is it so? How is quantumness lost as we abandon the microscopic domain? These questions, which remain to date largely unanswered, address interesting and challenging goals of modern research in physics, and serve the overarching goal of this project. TEQ will establish the large-scale limit of quantum mechanics by pursuing a novel research programme that aims at surpassing the current approach based on matter-wave interferometry. Specifically, the TEQ Consortium will
1) Trap an ad hoc manufactured nanocrystal in a radio-frequency ion trap, cooling it by optical parametric feedback, so as to let it operate in ultra-low noise environments.
2) Determine quantitatively all the major sources of decoherence affecting the nanocrystal, and control them experimentally so as to prepare high-quality quantum states of its motional degrees of freedom.
3) Analyse the light scattered by the nanocrystal to test the quantum predictions for the motion of the particle against those of spontaneous collapse and non-standard decoherence mechanisms, and thus pinpoint/rule-out key quantum-spoiling effects, beyond all the studies performed so far.
This roadmap will enable the test of quantum effects for systems whose mass is orders of magnitude larger than that employed in the most successful quantum experiments to date, thus closing the gap with the macroscopic world. Moreover, it will entail significant technological impact: the device that will be built will exhibit exquisite sensitivity to frequency and displacements, thus embodying a significant contribution of explicit technological nature to the design of quantum empowered metrological sensors.

Call for proposal

H2020-FETOPEN-1-2016-2017
See other projects for this call

Coordinator

UNIVERSITA DEGLI STUDI DI TRIESTE
Address
Piazzale Europa 1
34127 Trieste
Italy
Activity type
Higher or Secondary Education Establishments
EU contribution
€ 621 260

Participants (8)

AARHUS UNIVERSITET
Denmark
EU contribution
€ 515 625
Address
Nordre Ringgade 1
8000 Aarhus C
Activity type
Higher or Secondary Education Establishments
ISTITUTO NAZIONALE DI FISICA NUCLEARE
Italy
EU contribution
€ 384 375
Address
Via Enrico Fermi 54
00044 Frascati
Activity type
Research Organisations
OESTERREICHISCHE AKADEMIE DER WISSENSCHAFTEN
Austria
EU contribution
€ 372 375
Address
Dr. Ignaz Seipel-platz 2
1010 Wien
Activity type
Research Organisations
THE QUEEN'S UNIVERSITY OF BELFAST
United Kingdom
EU contribution
€ 442 198,75
Address
University Road Lanyon Building
BT7 1NN Belfast
Activity type
Higher or Secondary Education Establishments
TECHNISCHE UNIVERSITEIT DELFT
Netherlands
EU contribution
€ 393 840
Address
Stevinweg 1
2628 CN Delft
Activity type
Higher or Secondary Education Establishments
UNIVERSITY COLLEGE LONDON
United Kingdom
EU contribution
€ 518 996,25
Address
Gower Street
WC1E 6BT London
Activity type
Higher or Secondary Education Establishments
UNIVERSITY OF SOUTHAMPTON
United Kingdom
EU contribution
€ 727 991,25
Address
Highfield
SO17 1BJ Southampton
Activity type
Higher or Secondary Education Establishments
M-SQUARED LASERS LIMITED
United Kingdom
EU contribution
€ 394 812,50
Address
Venture Building 1 Kelvin Campus Maryhill Road West Of Scotland Science Park
G20 0SP Glasgow
Activity type
Private for-profit entities (excluding Higher or Secondary Education Establishments)