Partners / Team


University of Birmingham (UoB), United Kingdom

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General Description UoB is one of the leading research-based universities in the UK. The University is ranked 66th in the Times Higher Educational World University Rankings for 2009 and it is ranked 94th in the Jiao Tong (China) worldwide league table of universities 2009. The results of the latest (2008) research assessment exercise confirm the School of Physics and Astronomy as one of the leading physics research institutions in the country. In May 2010 the Times League Table ranked Physics at the UoB as second in the country.
Supervisors and Expertise Prof. Kai Bongs: : (20%) quantum sensors and quantum gas mixtures
Dr. Vincent Boyer: (10%) quantum optics and ultracold atom.
Dr. Jon Goldwin: (10%) atom-photon interactions, optical resonators.
Dr Y. Singh: (50%) BEC in Space and quantum gases.
Dr. Nicola Wilkin: (5%) : quantum gas theory, gender equality champion
Key Facilities and Infrastructure 10 Staff available to interact with ESRs, 5 state-of-the-art cold atom laboratories, 2 atom interferometry experiments being set up in addition to 1 optical clock experiment, support from dedicated knowledge transfer manger, mechanical and electronic workshop.
Previous Training Programmes and Research UoB has been involved in been involved in over 130 FP7 projects at Nov 2011 (including projects in negotiation) and in particular 42 Marie Curie projects, of which 11 were research training networks and early-stage training sites.
Specific projects with relevance to FACT are:
'Mobile Optical Clock' Marie Curie Fellowship (EC 255000)
Partner in the collaborative European project SOC-II 'Space Optical Clock-II' (EC 263500)
Coordinator of the European project “iSENSE: Integrated Quantum Sensors”
Publications Science, 328, 5985 (2010), Science 321, 544 (2008), Nature 457, 859 (2009)


Physikalisch- Technische Bundesanstalt (PTB), Germany

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General Description The Physikalisch-Technische Bundesanstalt (PTB) is the German national metrology institute providing scientific and technical services. As an organization, it is the highest technical authority under the auspices of the Federal Ministry of Economics and Technology (BMWi) and has an annual budget of about 140 million Euros. It has about 1800 staff members. Its main tasks are Fundamentals of metrology, metrology for economy, metrology for society, international affairs.
Supervisors and Expertise Dr. U. Sterr : (10%) senior scientist, head of group Quantum Optics with Cold Atoms
Dr. Ch. Lisdat : (10%) senior scientist and associate professor at LUH Hannover
Dr H. Schnatz: (5%) senior scientist, head of department Quantum optics and Unit of Length
Key Facilities and Infrastructure The research group is well equipped with all equipment for frequency metrology (e.g. 2 fs fiber lasers, several ultrastable laser, an operational Sr lattice clock, fibre links to Munich and Hannover). PTB as national metrology lab operates two Cs fountain clocks, single ion optical clocks and is linked to most national labs by two-way satellite links or GPS common view
Previous Training Programmes and Research EU FP5 Research Training Network CAUAC (Cold Atoms and Ultra-precise Atomic Clocks)
ELIPS project “Space Optical Clocks” (ESTEC Contract Nr 20579/ 07/ NL/VJ), 2007-9, (as participant)
EURAMET FP7 project: “Optical Clocks for a Redefinition of the Second” (JRP Number: T1 J2.1) (as participant)
Cluster of Excellence QUEST (since 2007).
SFB 407, „Atom interferometry near the quantum projection noise limit“ and „Ultracold collisions and their spectroscopic effects“ (2003-2009) in collaboration with F. Riehle.
DFG Research Training Group on “Fundamentals and applications of ultra-cold matter” starting in 2012
Publications Metrologia 48, 399 (2011); Phys. Rev. Lett. 103, 130401 (2009);Phys. Rev. Lett. 103, 090801 (2009)


Menlo Systems GmbH (Menlo), Private Sector, SME, Germany

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General Description Menlo Systems GmbH is a spin-off from the Max Planck Institute for Quantum Optics (MPQ). It was founded in 2001 to commercialise the optical frequency comb technology. This revolutionary and simple technique for measuring the frequency of light was pioneered by Professor Theodor Hänsch, director of the institute and Nobel laureate 2005, and his coworkers. Menlo Systems has continuously developed robust and transportable frequency combs. The latest version is based on fiber lasers and is fully automated, hands off and comes with network control software. In addition Menlo Systems has widened its product portfolio and is among other products now developing and selling stand alone Er, Yb and Tm doped fiber lasers, CW as well as pulsed
Supervisors and Expertise Prof. Dr. T.W. Hänsch (5%): board member of Menlo, he received (among others) the Nobel Prize for Physics in 2005 for the development of frequency comb technology.
Dr. R. Holzwarth (10%) Managing Director & CTO, 15 years frequency comb expertise
Dr. M. Fischer (10%) senior frequency comb expert, division leader frequency combs
Dr. M. Lezius (10%) project leader space combs
Dr. T. Steinmetz (5%) project leader astro combs
Key Facilities and Infrastructure Menlo System is the world leading company for optical frequency combs and related optical stabilization equipment. This includes the measurement and stabilization of narrow line width lasers with an accuracy of 10-16 and beyond. Menlo Systems has a fully equipped laser production and research facility in the southern Munich suburb of Martinsried. On the research side 2 fully equipped optics labs are available, including a permanent frequency comb installation, pulsed and cw test laser sources, fusion splicers, optical spectrum analyzers, and all necessary electronic equipment like spectrum analyzers, oscilloscopes and rf noise measurement equipment
Previous Training Programmes and Research As such Menlo Systems has a 10 year history of hosting students and is well suited to host an additional PhD student as envisioned by this proposal. Menlo is currently running 4 FP7 (1 ITN) projects and 3 Eurostars projects on the European level as well as several nationally funded projects.


Ecole Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne (EPFL), Switzerland

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General Description The laboratory of Photonics and Quantum Measurements is headed by Associate Professor Tobias J. Kippenberg at EPFL. EPFL is one of the two Swiss Federal Institutes of Technology. With the status of a national school since 1969, the young engineering school has grown in many dimensions, to the extent of becoming one of the most famous European institutions of science and technology. Associated with several specialised research institutes, the two Ecoles Polytechniques (Institutes of Technology) form the EPF domain , which is directly dependent on the Federal Department of Home Affairs.
Supervisors and Expertise Prof. T.J. Kippenberg (15%): optical microresonators, cavity optomechanics, monolithic optical frequency combs, sensitive biophysical recognition
Previous Training Programmes and Research 1) Principal Investigator of FP6 - Marie Curie Excellence Grant (EXT)
2) Participant: FP 7 STREP “MINOS”, Oct. 2008 – Oct. 2011
3) Principal Investigator of FP7 Intra European Fellowship (IEF)- QUOM
4) Principal Investigator of FP6 - Marie Curie International Reintegration Grant
5) Participant: NanoScience ERA Project, July 2006- July 2009
Publications 1) E. Verhagen*, S. Deléglise*, S. Weis*, A. Schliesser and T.J. Kippenberg“Quantum-coherent coupling of a mechanical oscillator to an optical cavity mode”, Nature (in press)
2) S. Weis, R. Rivière, S. Deléglise, E. Gavartin, O. Arcizet, A. Schliesser, and T. J. Kippenberg “Optomechanically Induced Transparency”, Science, Volume 330, p. 1512, 2010
3) P. Del Haye. A. Schliesser, O. Arcizet, T. Wilken, R. Holtzwarth, T.J. Kippenberg “Monolithic Optical Frequency Comb Generator, Nature, 450, 1214, Dec. 2007 & Nature News and Views


Leibniz Universität Hanover (LUH), Germany

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General Description Leibniz Universität Hannover has more than 21000 students ad is successfully represented in the excellence initiative by the excellence clusters Regenerative Biology to Reconstructive Therapy (REBIRTH) (in cooperation with Hannover Medical School) and Centre for Quantum Engineering and Space-Time Research (QUEST). As part of the Cluster of Excellence QUEST (Centre for Quantum Engineering and Space Time Research) the research field of this group covers a wide range of physics in the area of atom optics and quantum sensors.
Supervisors and Expertise Prof. Ernst M. Rasel (10%): Laser Optics, Quantum Sensors, Bose-Einstein Condensates, Nonlinear Optics, Precision Metrology.
Prof. Wolfgang Ertmer (5%) has an internationally outstanding expertise in quantum engineering and metrology.
He is coodinator of the Sonderforschungsbereich 407 and Excellence Cluster QUEST, Co-coordinator of the Laboratory of Nano- and Quantum-Engineering of the University Hanover and member of the Board Laser Zentrum Hannover.
Key Facilities and Infrastructure 11 cold atom setups, workshop and cleanroom facilities.
Staff: The group “Atom Optics and Quantum Sensors” at IQ currently consists of 3 permanent members, 3 postdoctoral students and 28 PhD students. Additionally, a staffed mechanical workshop as well as a staffed electronics workshop is available
Previous Training Programmes and Research 1) Coordinator of the project “Future Inertial Atomic Quantum Sensors” (NEST-2003-1
2) Coordination of the EuroQUASAR project “IQS: Inertial Atomic and Photonic Quantum sensors: Ultimate Performance and Application” (2008-2011)
3) Principal Investigator in the Task Group 2: Quantum Test of the Equivalence Principle within the Cluster of Excellence QUEST
Publications New Journal of Physics 13, 125010 (2011); Science 328, 1540-1543 (2010)
Phys. Rev. Lett. 100, 030201 (2008)


Istituto Nazionale di Ricerca Metrologica (INRIM), Italy

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General Description The Istituto Nazionale di Ricerca Metrologica (INRIM) is the Italian national metrological institute, in charge of the realization and dissemination of the primary standards in the frame of the International System of Units. Thus, the main activities are devoted to scientific research to improve standards and measurement capabilities as well as to the technological transfer and related services to society.
Supervisors and Expertise A. Godone: (10%) (Research Director, group leader) clocks and laser metrology
D. Calonico: (40%) laser cooled atomic clocks
F. Levi: (20%) laser cooled atomic frequency standards
L. Lorini: (40%) laser cooled atomic frequency standards
C. Calosso (20%) ultra low phase noise electronics for clocks
Key Facilities and Infrastructure 2 Cs fountain clock setups,1 Yb optical clock setup, time-frequency remote comparison based both on satellite technique and on optical links techniques; ultra stable optical resonators, ultra stable compact atomic clocks
Previous Training Programmes and Research - Participant in the EC Project “Accurate time/frequency comparison and dissemination through optical telecommunication networks” funded in 2011
- Participant in the EC Project “Optical clocks for a new definition of the second”
- Coordinator of the Project “Ytterbium Trap Reference Oscillator”
- Coordinator of the project “Next Generation Compact Atomic Clocks” (ESTEC contract 21504/08/NL/GLC 2008-2009); Coordinator of the project “CPT Rubidium maser clock Evaluation” (ESA contract 16104/02/NL/DS 2003- 2004)
Publications Pizzocaro M et al. Realization of an Ultrastable 578 nm Laser for Yb Lattice Clock, accepted to be published on IEEE Trans on UFFC (2012)
IEEE Trans on UFFC 58, 2582 (2011)
Levi et al., Lattice Yb Optical Clock and Cryogenic Cs Fountain at INRIM, Proc. of the 7th Symposium on Freq. Standards and Metrology, USA Oct 2008 editor L. Maleki, World Scientific (2009)


Università di Firenze (UNIFI), Italy

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General Description From 2002 the group of G. M. Tino started at Department of Physics two experimental activities on high precision spectroscopy and atomic interferometry: the first experiment is working towards the realization of an optical clock referenced to forbidden strontium transitions, and the second is realizing an atomic interferometer for an independent and new measurement of the gravitational constant G and to test Newtonian gravity at small length scale.
Supervisors and Expertise Prof. Guglielmo M. Tino (10%): precision measurements with ultracold atoms, quantum gases, atom interferometry and laser spectroscopy, interaction of cold atoms with surfaces, atom optics, laser physics and optics.
Prof. Marco Prevedelli (15%): precision measurements with cold atoms, atom interferometry, frequency metrology, precision electronics.
Dr. Nicola Poli (20%): Sr, Yb and K cold atoms and high resolution spectroscopy, dynamics in optical lattices, optical clocks and frequency stabilization of laser sources for precision spectroscopy and optical frequency measurements.
Key Facilities and Infrastructure Optical clock setup referenced to forbidden Sr transitions; Atomic interferometer setup for an independent and new measurement of the gravitational constant G and to test Newtonian gravity at small length scale.
Previous Training Programmes and Research 1) MAGIA Misura Accurata di G mediante Interefrometria Atomica, INFN, 2003
2) FINAQS Future Inertial Quantum Sensors, STREP- FP6 (NEST-3-ADVENTURE), 2005
3) SLCA, Laser Cooled Atom Sensor, ESA - European Spatial Agency, 28/02/2005
4) SAI, Space Atom Interferometers, ESA- European Spatial Agency, 2008
5) SOC, Space Optical Clocks, ESA- European Spatial Agency, 2008
6) EUROQUASAR-IQS, Inertial Atomic and Photonic Quantum Sensors Ultimate Performance and Applications, European Science foundation Eurocores, 2008
Publications Appl. Phys. B 97, 27-33 (2009); Proc. EFTF – IFCS, p. 347 (2009)


Heinrich-Heine-Universität Düsseldorf ( HHUD), Germany

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General Description The Schiller research group is devoted to precision measurements in Relativity, atomic and molecular physics. Main projects are: development of optical clocks based on neutral atoms, application of optical clocks for fundamental tests of the laws of physics. The Görlitz research group is devoted to the study of laser-cooled matter. A major aspect of the group work is the investigation of possible applications of ultracold matter such as the development of optical lattice clocks with Yb.
Supervisors and Expertise Prof. S. Schiller working on quantum optics and metrology for 17 years.
Prof. A. Görlitz working on laser cooling and trapping of atoms for 14 years.
Key Facilities and Infrastructure Laboratory with dedicated transportable apparatus for an Yb lattice optical clock, optical frequency metrology lab with one Ti:Sapphire and one Er:fiber frequency comb incl. virtual beat technique, 1 H-maser, stabilized lab-to-lab optical links, ultrastable ULE clock laser (1156 nm), ultrastable cavities for stabilization of lattice laser, wavemeters. Mechanical and electronics workshop (analog and digital electronics, SMD capability) with 4.5 technical staff.
Previous Training Programmes and Research In the field related to this network, over the last 5 years, the groups have supervised 4 Bachelor students, 6 master students and 6 Ph.D. students and 3 post-docs.
1. Coordinator of DLR project “Development of a microwave-optical local oscillator for the STE-QUEST mission”
2. ESA Project “Development, Integration and Test of Critical Ground Optical Clocks Elements”, 2011-3
3. Coordinator and Participant of EU-FP7-SPACE Project “Space Optical Clocks 2”
4. Co-proposer of the ESA mission proposal “STE-QUEST” (2010)
5. Coordinator & participants of the ELIPS project “Space Optical Clocks” (ESTEC Contract Nr 20579/ 07/ NL/VJ), 2007-9
6. Project „Entwicklung optischer Atomuhren auf der Basis ultrakalter Atome für Weltraumanwendungen“ (DLR 50 QT 0701) (as coordinator and participant)
7. Project “Feasibility and applications of optical clocks as frequency and time references in ESA Deep Space Stations” (ESA ITT I-5057/05/F/VS)
8. Project “Optical cavity cryo-resonator breadboard for ground optical clocks” (ESOC AO/1-5902/09/D/JR)
9. One of the principal proposers of mission “Einstein Gravity Explorer” (2007 Cosmic Vision call).
Publications PRL 103, 090401 (2009); Appl. Phys. B 104, 741 (2011) ; Phys. Rev. A 83, 040702 (2011)


Observatoire de Paris (OP), France

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General Description SYRTE is the French national laboratory for time and frequency metrology. Its main field of activity is the development of cold atom clocks with improved accuracy. The atomic fountains developed at SYRTE are among the most accurate clocks in the world with a present accuracy around 3×10-16. One of these fountains is a unique transportable system which was initially developed as a space clock prototype. SYRTE is playing a leading role together with ENS in the development of the space projects PHARAO and ACES which aim at flying a space clock using cold Cs atoms onboard the international space station in 2015-2016. SYRTE is also at the front head of research on optical lattice clocks, with two projects using Sr and Hg atoms
Supervisors and Expertise Dr. S. Bize (10%): head of optical frequency group, frequency metrology ßß Dr J. Lodewyck (30%): optical clocks
Y. Le Coq (5%): optical frequency comb; optical frequency metrology
Key Facilities and Infrastructure Three microwave fountain clocks, two optical clocks, a gravimeter and a gyro-accelerometer. Technical support is available by mechanical and electrical workshops, with extensive experience in RF and microwave electronics
Previous Training Programmes and Research 1) Project PHARAO/ACES (CNES, ESA)
2) Participant to the ELIPS project “Space Optical Clocks” (ESTEC Contract Nr 20579/ 07/ NL/VJ), 2007-9,;
3) Coordinator of the IMERA-Plus project “Optical clocks for a new definition of the second” (ERA-Net-Plus for Research & Development, EC Grant Agreement No. 217257, FP7)
4) Project “Feasibility and applications of optical clocks as frequency and time references in ESA Deep Space Stations” (ESA ITT I-5057/05/F/VS)
5) Project “Optical Reference Cavities for Use in Future Optical Atomic Clock Implementations” (ESOC AO/1-5972/08/NL/CP)
6) One of the principal proposers of mission “SAGAS” (2007 Cosmic Vision call)
7) One of the principal investigators of mission “STE-QUEST” (2011 Cosmic Vision, project currently in phase 1).
Publications Phys. Rev. Lett 106, 073005 (2011); Phys. Rev. Lett. 106, 210801 (2011); Phys. Rev. A, 79, 053829 (2009)


National Physical Laboratory (NPL), United Kingdom

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General Description The National Physical Laboratory (NPL) is the UK’s national standards laboratory and one of the world-leading centres in the development and application of highly accurate measurement techniques. The Time & Frequency group at NPL is responsible for research, development, and operation of technologies related to microwave and optical atomic clocks including highly stable lasers and cavities, atomic and ionic-based reference systems, trapping and laser cooling, optical frequency combs, and microwave atomic fountains.
Supervisors and Expertise Prof. Patrick Gill (5%): Senior NPL Fellow, Head of group, Visiting Professor at Imperial College London and at University of Oxford, frequency standards
Dr. Geoffrey Barwood (15%): Principle researcher, frequency metrology
Dr Anne Curtis (30%): Senior researcher; frequency metrology
Dr Yuri Ovchinnikov (20%): Senior researcher, Visiting professor at University College London, cold atom physics and metrology
Key Facilities and Infrastructure ULE-cavity-stabilised Nd:YAG lasers with sub-Hz linewidths; Strontium neutral optical lattice clock facility in development; Strontium & ytterbium ion optical frequency standards with a demonstrated accuracy ~ 10-15; Femtosecond laser combs – two Ti:sapphire-based systems and one fibre-based comb; A laboratory test-bed for frequency transfer via optical fibre networks; Two caesium fountain primary frequency standards and a rubidium fountain standard
Previous Training Programmes and Research 1) Project “Optical clocks for a new definition of the second”, (EMRP Contract T1.J2.1)
2) Project “Optical atomic clocks for space”, (ESA Contract 21641/08/NL/CP)
3) Project “Design analysis of stable optical reference cavities for use in future optical atomic clock implementations” (ESA Contract 22461/09/NL/CP)
4) Project “Feasibility and applications of optical clocks as frequency and time references in ESA deep space stations” (ESA Contract 19837/06/F/VS)
5) Project “Optical frequency synthesizer for space-borne optical frequency metrology” (ESA Contract 19595/06/NL/PM)
6) UK National Measurement Programme: Project “Neutral Atom Lattice Clock”; Pathfinder project 110767
Publications Optics.Lett. 36 3572 (2011); Science 306, 1355–1358 (2004); PRL 93 133001 (2004).


Kayser-Threde GmbH (KT), Private Sector, SME, Germany

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General Description Kayser-Threde GmbH is a leading systems house specialized in the design, development, integration and test of high-technology solutions for the aerospace, industrial and scientific sectors. The broad range of solutions includes applications for manned and unmanned space missions, data acquisition and management, optics and process control.
Supervisors and Expertise Dr. Kurt Kemmerle: Senior scientist, project manager, formerly led KT’s “Low Gravity and Exploration” department, expertise in space experiments on MIR, and ISS.
Dipl.-Ing. Markus Plattner: Electronics engineer, project manager, member of the Advanced Technology Development & Studies department
Key Facilities and Infrastructure Mechanics, electronics and optics manufacturing facilities; integration rooms with clean room conditions (up to class 100); Thermal/Thermal-Vacuum Test Chambers (volume 80 l, pressure < 1∙10-5 mbar); NASTRAN, ESATAN and ESARAD software for structural and thermal modeling, ZEMAX for optical analysis; optical and electronic laboratories equipped with high precision, calibrated test equipment as logic analyzers, oscilloscopes, signal generators, electric and optical spectrum analyzers, interferometers, optical auto-correlators
Previous Training Programmes and Research 1) “Schlüsseltechnologien für zukünftige grundlagenphysikalische Satelliten-Missionen”; DLR contract no. 50OO0801
2) “Optical Frequency Comb: Critical Elements Pre-development“; ESA contract no. 20071/06/NL/PM
3) “HSB - Hybrid Sensor Bus for Telecommunication Satellites”, ESA contract no. 4000104262/11/NL/US
4) “Development of Core Technological Elements in Preparation for Future Optical Atomic Frequency Standards and Clocks in Space”, ESA contract 4000104271/11/NL/NA. KT trainees pass through internal human resources development programs, which focus on the improvement, expanding and monitoring of project, engineering and soft skills.
Publications Plattner M.P., Proceedings of EFTF, 13.-16.04.2010, Noordwijk, Netherlands
Müller M.S., IEEE Transactions on Instrumentation and Measurement 59(3), pp. 696-703, 03/2010; Hugentobler U.,Proceedings of 2nd International Colloquium - Scientific and Fundamental Aspects of the Galileo Program, 14.-16.10.2009, Padua, Italy.


KAYSER ITALIA S.r.l. (KI), Private Sector, SME, Italy

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General Description Kayser Italia, is devoted to study, design, manufacturing, integration and testing of H/W and S/W systems and subsystems for space applications. The yearly experience got with different carriers, as Space Shuttle, Russian BION, FOTON, SOYUZ and RESOURCE spacecrafts, the European sounding rockets and stratospheric balloons, as well as with different platforms, like STS, ISS and LEO satellites have enhanced a multidisciplinary engineering know-how in physics, electronics, software, mechanical and thermal design.
Supervisors and Expertise A. Donati (10%): Marketing Director, Project Manager, optical clocks technology
A. Tortora (30%): Project Engineer, optical clocks technology
Key Facilities and Infrastructure Hardware: electronic instrumentation, development tools for various microprocessors and FPGA’s, two Climatic chambers (300 and 990 liters) for temperature and humidity tests, thermal controlled bath for temperature sensors calibration, vacuum pumps and glass bells for de-gassing of coatings and vacuum tests of PCBs. microscopes and video cameras for inspection, video-based inspection and measurement system, clean room 100 sq. meters.
Software: Operating systems, Office automation, Programming languages, Design tools (Microsoft Visual Studio, Keil C51, Cadence OrCad, Mentor , Autodesk: Inventor, Mechanical Desktop, Autocad, Autosketch, NASTRAN MSC Manufacturing tools: Tools for soldering and r-working of TH components and SMT components, Crimping tools for connectors, Wire-wrap tools, Laminar flow bench, Vacuum packing system for electronic boards and parts.
Previous Training Programmes and Research 1) Prime Contractor of the project “Studio di fattibilità per orologi atomici ottici” ASI Contract 1/013/06/0
2) Prime Contractor of the project “Feasibility and applications of optical clocks as frequency and time references in ESA Deep Space Stations” (ESA ITT I-5057/05/F/VS)
Publications International Workshop “Advances in precision tests and experimental gravitation in space”, Arcetri (FI) 28-30 September 2006); ESA-ESRIN Frascati, 2nd ESA International Workshop on Optical Atomic Clocks, 10-12 October 2007; IAPG/FESG No. 28, 26-27 May, 2008, Munich, Germany


The University of Nottingham (UoN), United Kingdom

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General Description Together with Bham, UUNOTT recently formed a strong alliance by founding the Midlands Ultracold Atom Research Centre. iSense will involve staff from the cold atoms group within the School of Physics and Astronomy, ranked 2nd in the UK in the recent Research Assessment Exercise
Supervisors and Expertise Prof. Peter Krüger (25%): the Chair of Cold Atom Physics and leads the Midlands Ultracold Atom Research Centre at UNOTT; quantum gases, integrated atom trapping and atom chips, and atom-surface interactions.
Dr. Thomas Fernholz: (25%): cold quantum gases, quantum optics at the interface of atoms and light, and atom chip research.
Prof. Mark Fromhold (15%): Chair in Theoretical Physics, expertise in condensed matter and semiconductor systems with dynamics of ultracold atoms.
Key Facilities and Infrastructure The cold atoms group consists of 3 experimental and 3 theoretical staff members and has close connections to the theoretical condensed matter physics, semiconductor and nanoscience groups. The focus of the experimental group is on atom chips, i.e. on miniaturised integrated devices of atom trapping and cooling. The functional direct collaboration with theorists and fabricators in house guarantees success in developing an integrated platform for the sensor. Technical support is available by the state-of-the-art mechanical and electrical workshops, cleanroom and microfabrication facilities, and a high performance computing cluster.
Previous Training Programmes and Research Previous/current projects with relevance to this ITN: STREPS: ACQUIRE, ACQP (Atom Chips), FP6 RTN Atom Chips, MUARC S&I, EPSRC grant 'Non-Equilibrium Dynamics in Open Quantum Systems' (~1M€), iSense, MC fellowship HyCode (Hybrid atom chips ~200k€), ESF Casimir network
Publications NATURE PHYSICS 1, 57-62, (2005) ; NATURE 435, 440-440, (2005) ; Book Series: Advances In Atomic Molecular and Optical Physics Vol: 48, Pages: 263-356, Published: 2002;


Université de Neuchâtel (UNINE), Switzerland

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General Description The LTF-UNINE has a considerable experience in laser atomic and molecular spectroscopy, stabilized lasers, laser cooling, atomic clocks, time and frequency metrology and ultra-fast lasers, space-qualified clocks, continuous cold caesium atom fountain clock. The current research: primary caesium frequency standards for fundamental metrology, compact and micro-fabricated rubidium atomic clocks for ground and space applications, optical frequency standards for low-phase-noise microwave generation and ultra-fast lasers for optical frequency comb generation, and coherent VUV and XUV generation.
Supervisors and Expertise Prof. T. Südmeyer (5%): head of LTF, photonics, nonlinear optics and ultra-fast science
Dr S. Schilt (20%): laser spectroscopy and optical frequency metrology
Dr G. Mileti (5%) time/frequency metrology and atomic clocks
Dr G. Di Domenico (5%): laser cooling and time/frequency metrology
Dr C. Affolderbach (5%): time/frequency metrology
Key Facilities and Infrastructure Two optical frequency combs, a self-referenced comb based on a 1.5 µm diode-pumped solid-state femtosecond laser and a commercial Er:fiber comb from MenloSystems with 250 MHz mode spacing. Laser test and characterization equipment: optical spectrum analyzer, wavemeter, scanning Fabry-Perot interferometers, optical powermeters, beam profilers, and different frequency discriminators to analyze the frequency noise of lasers and frequency combs. An ultra-stable laser at 1.55 µm is available and a mid-infrared ultra-stable laser at 4.5 µm is under development based on a quantum cascade laser. Two active H masers with GPS monitoring available, as well as standard time and frequency measurements instrumentation.
Previous Training Programmes and Research 1) “Tunable frequency stabilization scheme for WALES - High-stability seeder/oscillator for WALES”, ESA contract 17267/03/NL/CH.“
2) LARC Gas cell laser clock technologies for atomic frequency standards”, ESTEC contract 19392/05/NL/CP
3) EU FP7 project “MAC-TFC” (, Grant agreement N°224132.
4) EuroQUASAR project “IQS: Inertial Atomic and Photonic Quantum sensors: Ultimate Performance and Application”.
5) Swiss National Science Foundation project “Fundamental metrology with laser-cooled atoms and optical frequency combs”, Grant N° 200020-121987
Publications Appl. Optics 49(25), 4801-4807 (2010); Opt. Express 19(24), 24171-24181 (2011)
Rev. Scient. Instr. 82(12), 123116 (2011)

Associated Partners


Entanglement Technologies Inc., (ET), Private Sector, SME, USA

Entanglement Technologies is a research and development company dedicated to designing, producing, and marketing best-of-breed trace gas sensors. Utilizing fundamental measurement techniques, Entanglement is designing ultra-trace gas sensors with applications in explosives detection, environmental monitoring, and natural resource prospecting. In terms of both precision and selectivity, our patented technology offers vast improvements over state of the art.

Entanglement Technologies' unique approach towards trace gas sensing borrows techniques from gradiometry, quantum metrology, and quantum optics and applies them to extreme-precision gas sensing. Combining well-established and novel proprietary methodologies, we produce sensors that operate at selectivity and sensitivity levels approaching fundamental limits. The company's scientific team is made up of physics, chemistry, and engineering talent culled from top academic and R&D institutions.

partners.txt · Last modified: 2016/02/18 16:09 by ur