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Searching for the Origin of Matter Using Pear-Shaped Nuclei

October 31, 2017 - 4:00pm
Jaideep Singh
Michigan State

Experimental tests of fundamental symmetries using nuclei and other particles subject to the strong nuclear force have led to the discovery of parity (P) violation and the discovery of charge-parity (CP) violation. It is believed that additional sources of CP-violation may be needed to explain the apparent scarcity of antimatter in the observable universe. A particularly sensitive and unambiguous signature of both time-reversal- (T) and CP-violation would be the existence of an electric dipole moment (EDM). The next generation of EDM searches in a variety of complimentary systems will have unprecedented sensitivity to physics beyond the Standard Model. My talk will focus on certain rare diamagnetic atoms which have pear-shaped nuclei. This uncommon nuclear structure significantly amplifies the observable effect of T, P, & CP-violation originating within the nuclear medium when compared to isotopes with nearly spherical nuclei such as Mercury-199. Certain isotopes of Radium (Ra), Protactinium (Pa), and Radon (Rn) are all expected to have enhanced atomic EDMs and will be produced in abundance at the Facility for Rare Isotope Beams currently under construction at Michigan State University. I will describe the status of the ongoing Ra-225 EDM search located at Argonne National Lab as well as the prospects for next generation searches for time-reversal violation in the FRIB-era with a particular emphasis on Pa-229.

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