Atoms in free fall
The Matter-wave Atomic Gradiometer Interferometric Sensor, also known as MAGIS-100, is a quantum sensor under construction at Fermilab that aims to explore fundamental physics with a 100-meter-long atom interferometer. This novel detector will search for ultralight dark matter, test quantum mechanics in new regimes and pave the way for future gravitational wave detectors.
The detector will be housed in a 100-meter-deep shaft at Fermilab that was constructed for a neutrino experiment many years ago. To explore aspects of quantum physics, scientists will drop groups of atoms down a vacuum tube, followed by beams of laser light.
MAGIS-100 combines established techniques from state-of-the-art 10-meter-scale atom interferometers with the latest technological advances of the world’s best atomic clocks. In addition to enabling new quantum experiments, MAGIS-100 will provide a development platform for a future kilometer-scale detector that would be sensitive enough to detect gravitational waves from known sources.