QT Gravity for the Global Geodetic Reference Frame

Lead Research Organisation: University of Birmingham
Department Name: School of Physics and Astronomy


This collaboration will open an adventurous new application for quantum sensing with wide reaching applications in the environmental sciences. We are aiming for improving the reference frame used by researchers in climate science to allow higher precision climate data to be collected, better models to be made and improved evidence for political decisions to be generated. As stated by the UN: "The Global Geodetic Reference Frame (GGRF) is the foundation for evidence-based policies and decisions, it underpins the collection and management of nationally integrated geospatial information and is used to monitor our dynamic Earth. Thus, the GGRF has direct societal relevance." This is the pivotal element we are targeting in this project.

In more detail, we are using the latest developments in quantum sensors and perform research into making them sufficiently robust to achieve world-record precision inside the UK Space Geodesy Facility in Herstmonceux. In parallel we will research into the tools to use the continuous stream of precise gravity data from the quantum sensor to better understand the tide models and other effects influencing the measurements defining our geodetic reference frames.


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