Markus Aspelmeyer

With their 13 million Euros ERC Synergy Grant, the Viennese quantum physicist Markus Aspelmeyer and the team around Oriol Romero-Isart from Innsbruck want to explore the limits of the quantum world by positioning a solid-state object containing billions of atoms at two locations simultaneously for the first time. The superposition principle states that a single object can behave as if it were in several places at once. This behaviour is confirmed in milestone experiments: at the scale of elementary particles, atoms and even molecules containing thousands of atoms. But is this also true for the macroscopic domain, say for solid state objects visible to the naked eye? Over the last years, the researchers have developed new experimental and theoretical techniques to levitate and control such nanoparticles in the quantum regime.