To search for new fundamental particles by using cold thorium oxide molecules to measure whether an electron has an asymmetric distribution of charge
Funds from this grant support ACME III, the third-generation Advanced Cold Molecule Electron electric dipole moment (EDM) search. ACME III is a Yale-Harvard-Northwestern collaboration to build advanced instrumentation capable of detecting new fundamental particles through precision measurement of the distortions these particles cause to the distribution of electric charge in an electron.К Led by Professor David DeMille at Yale, Professor John Doyle at Harvard, and Professor Gerald Gabrielse at Northwestern, the ACME team will attempt to measure the electrical charge of electrons present in a dense beam of thorium oxide molecules, made super-cold by colliding the molecules with a cryogenic buffer gas. The technique proved successful in the first and second iterations of the ACME experiment, and phase III looks to build on this record of success. ACME III will increase both the number of molecules measured and the duration of each measurement, boosting the overall sensitivity of the experiment, compared to ACME II, by a factor of 30. The project will produce high-profile publications, talks, and posters at major conferences, training for two postdoctoral and six Ph.D. students each year, and at least four Ph.Ds. during the grant period.