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The Laboratory of Interferometry and Quantum Optics of the University of Trento was inaugurated today, 4 October: a R&D facility, set up in collaboration with the INFN National Institute for Nuclear Physics, where all the projects on the study of gravitational waves of the Department of Physics will be held. The objective of the R&D activity is to improve the sensitivity of interferometric gravitational wave detectors, in support of large international projects, in particular the current Virgo detector and Einstein Telescope, the project for the future underground observatory in Europe, which could be hosted in Sardinia, Italy. The Laboratory of Interferometry and Quantum Optics is a space eagerly awaited by those who do research at the Department of Physics of the University of Trento, but its inauguration is also of interest to the entire scientific community engaged in the study of gravitational waves. Despite their extreme precision in measuring gravitational waves, current gravitational wave detectors are, in fact, capable of listening to signals coming from only a limited part of the universe around us. To broaden horizons, it is necessary to overcome technical limits of different nature: in particular, in the new Laboratory the work will be concentrated on the search for solutions for the mitigation of the noise that derives from the quantum nature of light and the optical losses of the detectors. These innovations will be applied both to improve the performance of the current detectors and in the realization of technologies for the Einstein Telescope.

[image ©UniTrento ph. Federico Nardelli]