Development of new technologies for precision torsion-balance experiments

by Matthew David Turner

Institution: University of Washington
Year: 2018
Keywords: autocollimator; gravity gradiometry; rotary actuator; torsion balance; weak-value amplification; Physics; Optics; Quantum physics; Physics
Posted: 02/01/2018
Record ID: 2219056
Full text PDF: http://hdl.handle.net/1773/40958


Torsion balances were first used for precision measurements of physics centuries ago and continue to be used to probe physical forces and test for new physics. Improving beyond current limits requires better sensitivity and better ability to monitor or reduce unwanted systematic effects. This dissertation describes two technologies developed to aid in these improvements. The first is an interferometric quasi-autocollimator an optical readout device inspired by quantum weak-value amplification and capable of an angular sensitivity of 10 picoradians per root hertz. The second is a gravity gradiometer torsion balance with a mass quadrupole that can be changed in situ. This balance uses a wirelessly powered non-magnetic rotary actuator, also developed as part of this work, which will enable additional approaches to systematics and torsion-balance science.Advisors/Committee Members: Gundlach, Jens H. (advisor).