Abstract
We carry out a theoretical investigation on the collective dynamics of an ensemble of correlatedatoms, subject to both vacuum fluctuations of spacetime and stochastic gravitational waves. Ageneral approach is taken with the derivation of a quantum master equation capable of describingarbitrary confined nonrelativistic matter systems in an open quantum gravitational environment. Itenables us to relate the spectral function for gravitational waves and the distribution function forquantum gravitational fluctuations and to indeed introduce a new spectral function for the zeropointfluctuations of spacetime. The formulation is applied to 2level identical bosonic atoms in anoffresonant highQ cavity that effectively inhibits undesirable electromagnetic delays, leading to agravitational transition mechanism through certain quadrupole moment operators. The overall relaxationrate before reaching equilibrium is found to generally scale collectively with the number Nof atoms. However, we are also able to identify certain states whose decay and excitation rates withstochastic gravitational waves and vacuum spacetime fluctuations amplify more significantly witha factor of N2. Using such favourable states as a means of measuring both conventional stochasticgravitational waves and novel zeropoint spacetime fluctuations, we determine the theoretical lowerbounds for the respective spectral functions. Finally, we discuss the implications of our findingson future observations of gravitational waves of a wider spectral window than currently accessible.Especially, the possible sensing of the zeropoint fluctuations of spacetime could provide anopportunity to generate initial evidence and further guidance of quantum gravity
Original language  English 

Article number  044018 
Pages (fromto)  114 
Number of pages  14 
Journal  Physical Review D 
Volume  96 
Issue number  4 
DOIs  
Publication status  Published  15 Aug 2017 
Bibliographical note
The authors are grateful for financial support to the National Council for Science and Technology (CONACyT) (D.Q.), the Carnegie Trust for the Universities of Scotland (T.O.), and the Cruickshank Trust and EPSRC GGTop Project (C.W.).Fingerprint
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Quantum principle of sensing gravitational waves: From the zeropoint fluctuations to the cosmological stochastic background of spacetime
Quinones, D. A. (Contributor), Oniga, T. (Contributor), Varcoe, B. T. H. (Contributor) & Wang, C. (Contributor), University of Leeds, 1 Jan 2017
DOI: 10.5518/159, https://doi.org/10.5518%2F159
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