Precision Measurement

Precision-measurement tools help scientists understand the universe, often through ground-breaking discoveries.

JILA physicists are at the forefront of efforts to invent and redefine tools for precision measurement. The tools developed at JILA are capable of probing tiny structures inside living cells, monitor the dynamics of chemical reactions, and directly measure the frequency of visible light. 

Historically, precision measurements at JILA helped pave the way for redefining the speed the light, defining the gravitational constant, and develop a universal constant time-keeping system. Current research into precision measurements at JILA could redefine the standard model of physics, realize the quantization of gravity, detect the astronomical collisions of black holes, search for evidence of dark matter, and even evolve our understanding of DNA and proteins, and the subsequent diseases that develop from their misfoldings.

Researchers in Precision Measurement

Photograph of Dana Anderson Dana Z. Anderson
Focus: Quantum Sensors, Precision Measurement Role: Experimentalist
Photograph of Eric Cornell Eric Cornell
Focus: BEC, Precision Measurement, Molecules, Frequency Combs Role: Experimentalist
Photograph of Murray Holland Murray Holland
Focus: Quantum Optics, Cold Atoms Role: Theorist
Photograph of Konrad Lehnert Konrad Lehnert
Focus: Quantum Nanomechanics, Microwave Quantum Optics, Mesoscopic Physics Role: Experimentalist
Photograph of Judah Levine Judah Levine
Focus: Methods for distributing precise time and frequency information Role: Experimentalist
Photograph of Ana Maria Rey Ana Maria Rey
Focus: Cold Atoms and Molecules, Quantum Many-body Systems, Precision Measurement, Quantum Information Role: Theorist
Photograph of James Thompson James Thompson
Focus: Cold Atoms, Quantum Optics and Information, Precision Measurement Role: Experimentalist
Photograph of Jun Ye Jun Ye
Focus: Cold Atoms and Molecules, Frequency Combs, Ultrastable Lasers, Precision Measurement Role: Experimentalist

Recent Highlights in Precision Measurement

Quantum gases of interacting molecules can exhibit unique dynamics. JILA and NIST Physicist Jun Ye has spent years of research to reveal, probe, and control these dynamics with potassium-rubidium molecules. In a new article published in Nature, Ye and his team of…

When it comes to creating ever more intriguing quantum systems, a constant need is finding new ways to observe them in a wide range of physical scenarios.  JILA Fellow Cindy Regal and JILA and NIST Fellow Ana Maria Rey have teamed up with Oriol Romero-Isart, a professor at the University of Innsbruck and IQOQI (Institute for Quantum Optics and…

There are many methods to determine what the limits are for certain processes. Many of these methods look to reach the upper and lower bounds to identify them for making accurate measurements and calculations. In the growing field of quantum sensing, these limits have yet to be found.  That may change, thanks to research done by JILA Fellow…