Exploring the Quantum Advantage in the Calibration of Inertial Sensors

Lead Research Organisation: University of Liverpool
Department Name: Electrical Engineering and Electronics


Inertial sensors form the backbone of all modern navigation systems. Ultra-precise gyroscopes and accelerometers that utilise quantum interference effects are currently being developed. These sensors offer a step change in the accuracy of future navigation systems and will provide a means to improve on current geological surveying methods and can allow tests of fundamental physics. To obtain the full benefit of such devices quantum sensors, like current classical systems, must be aligned so as to minimise
systematic or cross-coupling errors in their measurements. Classical inertial sensors are normally subjected to a series of calibration tests, where any systematic errors are measured and recorded. The main negative effects of the errors can then be removed by correcting the data that they generate in software. Such calibration tests, require a series of known rotations to be applied in a series of orientations and are known as multiposition
tests. They are used to correct for scale variations and static biases for single sensors, and non-orthogonality between different sensors (cross-coupling errors). This project will explore the generalisation of classical multi-position tests through the use of explicitly quantum input states for the inertial sensors. Preliminary analysis has shown that there can be advantages in using entangled quantum states as part of the calibration of optical gyroscopes [1]. This previous work has demonstrated that a quantum advantage does exist in the calibration of inertial sensors, but this has not been fully explored. This project will develop methods to optimise this quantum advantage and apply them to the practical quantum sensors currently being developed. The principle objective is to provide a quantitative improvement of the accuracy of these quantum inertial sensors through improved calibration procedures. The project team will benefit from existing collaborations with the University of Sheffield (P. Kok) and the University of Sussex (J. Dunningham) and will develop collaborations with experimental partners in the Quantum Sensing and Metrology Hub.
[1] P. Kok, J. Dunningham, J. F. Ralph, 'The role of entanglement in calibrating optical quantum gyroscopes', Phys. Rev. A 95, 012326/1-10 (2017).


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Studentship Projects

Project Reference Relationship Related To Start End Student Name
EP/N509590/1 01/10/2016 30/09/2021
2106393 Studentship EP/N509590/1 01/10/2018 30/09/2021 Luciano Anastassiou