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Laser-cooled Radium and Physics Beyond the Standard Model

Matt Dietrich, Argonne National Laboratory
Thursday, October 20, 2016 - 12:30pm to 1:30pm
PAT C-520
Electric dipole moments (EDMs) are signatures of time-reversal, parity, and charge-parity (CP) violation, which makes them a sensitive probe of expected new physics beyond the Standard Model, such as supersymmetry. No experiment has yet observed a non-zero EDM to challenge the Standard Model. Due to its large nuclear octupole deformation and high atomic mass, the radioactive Ra-225 isotope is a favorable EDM case; it is particularly sensitive to CP-violating interactions in the nuclear medium. We have developed a cold-atom approach of studying the spin precession of the Ra-225 atoms held in an optical dipole trap, and demonstrated the method by completing the first measurement of its atomic EDM. Upcoming improvements are expected to dramatically improve our sensitivity, and significantly improve on the search for new physics in several sectors.