To be able to detect gravitation waves in space, physicist have to measure truly minimal displacements: ten billion times smaller than the size of an atom. An improved superconducting sensor is a suitable candidate for this job, Martin Podt of the University of Twente now states in his PhD thesis. He has improved the sensitivity of a so-called ‘SQUID’ in way that it can be combined with a large ball-shaped gravitation detector. Podt succeeds in this by improving the sensitivity. He integrates the sensor with electronics and lowers the operating temperature. He is defending his Phd thesis on January 17, within the Faculty of Science of the University of Twente, The Netherlands.
Gravitation waves, ‘ripples in space’, are very interesting because they provide information about collisions in space. Physicist around the world are working on ways to detect them. Leiden University in The Netherlands currently develops a ball-shaped detector of 65 centimeters in diameter. This grows over a distance of no more than 10 exp –20 meter. To compare it with the size of the earth (and therefore multiplying the size by 20 million), you would like to detect a growth of one fifth of a picometer (one picometer is a millionth of a millionth of a meter).
The superconducting sensor Martin Podt of the University of Twente has designed and developed, gets to the desired sensitivity and can be combined with the MiniGrail system. It is a so-called Superconducting Qantum Interference Devices (SQUID). Podt has improved it by lowering the temperature to a value close to zero Kelvin, and by integrating sensor and electronics. “Our current SQUID did not reach the extreme demands of this application. We would then measure too much noise, and you simply cannot distinguish the noise from the parameter you want to measure,” says Podt. He lowers the temperature to about 20 milliKelvin -the MiniGrail is also cooled down to that temperature. The noise of the ‘conventional’ SQUID is introduced when the signal is amplified using an amplifier operating at room temperature. Podt therefore chooses to put the amplifier on the chip as well, so that both are operating at very low temperatures. The result is that it works substantially faster and introduces no noise.
Wiebe van der Veen | EurekAlert!
Study offers new theoretical approach to describing non-equilibrium phase transitions
27.04.2017 | DOE/Argonne National Laboratory
SwRI-led team discovers lull in Mars' giant impact history
26.04.2017 | Southwest Research Institute
More and more automobile companies are focusing on body parts made of carbon fiber reinforced plastics (CFRP). However, manufacturing and repair costs must be further reduced in order to make CFRP more economical in use. Together with the Volkswagen AG and five other partners in the project HolQueSt 3D, the Laser Zentrum Hannover e.V. (LZH) has developed laser processes for the automatic trimming, drilling and repair of three-dimensional components.
Automated manufacturing processes are the basis for ultimately establishing the series production of CFRP components. In the project HolQueSt 3D, the LZH has...
Reflecting the structure of composites found in nature and the ancient world, researchers at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign have synthesized thin carbon nanotube (CNT) textiles that exhibit both high electrical conductivity and a level of toughness that is about fifty times higher than copper films, currently used in electronics.
"The structural robustness of thin metal films has significant importance for the reliable operation of smart skin and flexible electronics including...
The nearby, giant radio galaxy M87 hosts a supermassive black hole (BH) and is well-known for its bright jet dominating the spectrum over ten orders of magnitude in frequency. Due to its proximity, jet prominence, and the large black hole mass, M87 is the best laboratory for investigating the formation, acceleration, and collimation of relativistic jets. A research team led by Silke Britzen from the Max Planck Institute for Radio Astronomy in Bonn, Germany, has found strong indication for turbulent processes connecting the accretion disk and the jet of that galaxy providing insights into the longstanding problem of the origin of astrophysical jets.
Supermassive black holes form some of the most enigmatic phenomena in astrophysics. Their enormous energy output is supposed to be generated by the...
The probability to find a certain number of photons inside a laser pulse usually corresponds to a classical distribution of independent events, the so-called...
Microprocessors based on atomically thin materials hold the promise of the evolution of traditional processors as well as new applications in the field of flexible electronics. Now, a TU Wien research team led by Thomas Müller has made a breakthrough in this field as part of an ongoing research project.
Two-dimensional materials, or 2D materials for short, are extremely versatile, although – or often more precisely because – they are made up of just one or a...
20.04.2017 | Event News
18.04.2017 | Event News
03.04.2017 | Event News
27.04.2017 | Life Sciences
27.04.2017 | Physics and Astronomy
27.04.2017 | Earth Sciences