Macroscopic Quantum Resonators (MAQRO): 2015 update

Rainer Kaltenbaek 1 Markus Aspelmeyer 1 Peter F Barker 2 Angelo Bassi 3, 4 James Bateman 5 Kai Bongs 6 Sougato Bose 2 Claus Braxmaier 7, 8 Časlav Brukner 1, 9 Bruno Christophe 10 Michael Chwalla 11 Pierre-François Cohadon 12 Adrian Michael Cruise 6 Catalina Curceanu 13 Kishan Dholakia 14 Lajos Diósi 15 Klaus Döringshoff 16 Wolfgang Ertmer 17 Jan Gieseler 18 Norman Gürlebeck 8 Gerald Hechenblaikner 11, 19 Antoine Heidmann 11, 19 Sven Herrmann 8 Sabine Hossenfelder 20 Ulrich Johann 11 Nikolai Kiesel 1 Myungshik Kim 21 Claus Lämmerzahl 8 Astrid Lambrecht 12 Michael Mazilu 14 Gerard J Milburn 22 Holger Müller 23 Lukas Novotny 18 Mauro Paternostro 24 Achim Peters 16 Igor Pikovski 25 André Pilan zanoni 26 Ernst M Rasel 17 Serge Reynaud 12 Charles Jess Riedel 27 Manuel Rodrigues 10 Loïc Rondin 18 Albert Roura 28 Wolfgang P Schleich 28, 29 Jörg Schmiedmayer 1 Thilo Schuldt 7 Keith C Schwab 30 Martin Tajmar 31 Guglielmo M Tino 32 Hendrik Ulbricht 33 Rupert Ursin 9 Vlatko Vedral 34, 35
Abstract : Do the laws of quantum physics still hold for macroscopic objects-this is at the heart of Schrödinger's cat paradox-or do gravitation or yet unknown effects set a limit for massive particles? What is the fundamental relation between quantum physics and gravity? Ground-based experiments addressing these questions may soon face limitations due to limited free-fall times and the quality of vacuum and microgravity. The proposed mission Macroscopic Quantum Resonators (MAQRO) may overcome these limitations and allow addressing such fundamental questions. MAQRO harnesses recent developments in quantum optomechanics, high-mass matter-wave interferometry as well as state-of-the-art space technology to push macroscopic quantum experiments towards their ultimate performance limits and to open new horizons for applying quantum technology in space. The main scientific goal is to probe the vastly unexplored 'quantum-classical' transition for increasingly massive objects, testing the predictions of quantum theory for objects in a size and mass regime unachievable in ground-based experiments. The hardware will largely be based on available space technology. Here, we present the MAQRO proposal submitted in response to the 4th Cosmic Vision call for a medium-sized mission (M4) in 2014 of the European Space Agency (ESA) with a possible launch in 2025, and we review the progress with respect to the original MAQRO proposal for the 3rd Cosmic Vision call for a medium-sized mission (M3) in 2010. In particular, the updated proposal overcomes several critical issues of the original proposal by relying on established experimental techniques from high-mass matter-wave interferometry and by introducing novel ideas for particle loading and manipulation. Moreover, the mission design was improved to better fulfill the stringent environmental requirements for macroscopic quantum experiments.
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Rainer Kaltenbaek, Markus Aspelmeyer, Peter F Barker, Angelo Bassi, James Bateman, et al.. Macroscopic Quantum Resonators (MAQRO): 2015 update. European physical journal quantum technology, Springer, 2016, 3 (1), pp.5. ⟨10.1140/epjqt/s40507-016-0043-7⟩. ⟨hal-01296939⟩

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