Next generation gravity measuring device gets a boost
03 Oct 2022



A new collaboration to demonstrate the use of additive manufacturing for a RAL Space-developed quantum gravimeter has been awarded funding from the UK’s innovation agency, Innovate UK.


​​​​​​​​​​​​Existing gradiometer technology.


​The QTEAM: Quantum Technologies Enabled by Additive Manufacturing team will apply additive manufacturing to produce a lightweight and power efficient device which uses quantum properties to provide highly accurate measurements of variations in gravity.

The team brings together expertise from Metamorphic, the University of Nottingham and Torr Scientific to build on the quantum gravimeter device currently being developed by RAL Space.

Dr Tristan Valenzuela Salazar, Quantum Sensors Group Leader at RAL Space said:

“The QTEAM consortium brings together a balanced mix of academic, engineering and industrial partners that is crucial to help advance quantum technologies for its application in space. The use of additive manufacturing will bring a step change in the optimization of size, weight and power in cold atoms based quantum technologies and has the potential to help significantly reduce cost"

The feasibility study is being co-funded by Innovate UK as part of the Industrial Strategy Challenge Fund strand to commercialise quantum technologies.

The project focuses on three key areas of innovation:

  • The development of new design methods for additively manufactured ultra-high vacuum (UHV) systems to enable a new "ultra-portable" phase of quantum technologies for space applications
  • The development of novel and highly efficient active and passive pumping methods
  • The optimisation of magneto-optical trapping via non-standard 4D magnetic field distributions (varying non-separably in time and spatial coordinates)

Project QTEAM aims to build a UK-based AM supply chain, placing the UK at the forefront of global ultra-portable Quantum devices. ​