Precision & Quantum Measurement laboratory (PQM-lab)
Inter-University Centre for Astronomy and Astrophysics,Pune,India

         "A single atomic particle forever floating at rest in free space" (H. Dehmelt, Nobel Prize in Physics, 1989)
  would be the ideal object for precision measurement of atomic properties and for the test of fundamental
- Klaus Blaum, and Gunter Werth, Molecular Beams in Physics and Chemistry.

The PQM-lab is dedicated to support the National Quantum Mission and other similar initiatives of India those have national importance

Our research goals are,

(i) Quantum metrology

Developing optical reference that has applications in classical as well as quantum communications, accurate calibration of the optical spectrographs, phase synchronization of the geographically distributed detectors and many more.

(ii) Precision measurements

Probing fundamental aspects of science such as testing constancy of the dimensionless fundamental constants, possible violations of the fundamental symmetries, and geodic measurements.

(iii) Quantum technologies

Developing novel techniques those are requisite for quantum-phenomena based technologies and fundamental science. As for example, phase stabilized long distance optical fiber (i.e. a quantum channel) as used for quantum communication and optical clock comparison.

In brief, the experiment shall comprise of a trapped ytterbium-ion (Yb+) optical clock based on its’ highly forbidden 4f 146s 2S1/2 - 4f13 6s2 2F7/2 electric octupole (E3) transition at 467 nm.

The facility is constituent of four major work packages, such as,
(i) Confining the Yb+ ion in a Paul trap and laser cooling them to sub-mK temperature;
(ii) Generation of ultra-stable ultra-narrow line-width laser to probe its clock transition;
(iii) Accurate synthesizing frequency of the measured clock transition at 467nm (642 121 496 772 645 Hz) using optical frequency comb;
(iv) Long distance dissemination of the optical photons, those referenced to the Yb+ optical clock, preserving its phase and other information

Setting up the experiment and pursuing scientific studies using it need to work on multidisciplinary areas, such as, simulation, indigenous designing, precision fabrication, benchmarking of the developed instruments through proper test-measurement-and-calibration, elaborate setup in the field of lasers & optics, customized development of low-noise analog, digital and FPGA based electronics, ultra-high vacuum, mechanical & software development and so on. Upon development this will be a facility of national importance for strategic and scientific reasons.

A cohesive team, working on different aspects of the experiment together with external industry & academia collaboration is needed. We are part of the Quantum Enabled Science and Technology (QuEST), a flagship program of the Department of Science and Technology (DST), which provides the platform to work collaboratively.