TEQ warms up for Space

July, 2021

The European Space Agency has recently released a report called Voyage 2050 that outlines the plan for the ESA Space Science Programme up to 2050. This is a new long-term plan that sets the European priorities in space science for the next decades.
For the first time in this framework, the foundations of quantum mechanics are included into the discussion of Space scientific priorities; specifically, possible experiments of the quantum superposition principle and of the quantum mechanical wave function collapse for different mass test particles are envisaged to be done is Space.
The TEQ project already operates in these area, developing new theoretical models and implementing tests of the quantum superposition principle on more and more macroscopic objects to establish the ultimate bounds to the validity of the quantum framework. However, these experiments, being carried out on Earth, are intrinsically limited by the dimensions of the objects whose quantum properties have to be tested.
That’s where the Space comes in the picture. In fact, Space offers a potentially attractive arena for creating and verifying quantum properties of macroscopic objects beyond current Earth-based capabilities.
TEQ partners A. Bassi (UniTs), H. Ulbricht (UoS), M. Carlesso (UniTs) and M. Paternostro (QUB) have recently developed a feasibility study focusing on the efforts to test the boundaries of quantum physics in Space. The study called “Testing the foundation of quantum physics in space via Interferometric and non-interferometric experiments with mesoscopic nanoparticles” is published today July 7, 2021, by Natures’ Communication Physics at this link: Testing the foundation of quantum physics in space via Interferometric and non-interferometric experiments with mesoscopic nanoparticles | Communications Physics (nature.com)