Super-Nyquist ultralight dark matter searches with broadband atom gradiometers

Leonardo Badurina*, Ankit Beniwal, Christopher McCabe

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Citations (Scopus)


Atom gradiometers have emerged as compelling broadband probes of scalar ultralight dark matter (ULDM) candidates that oscillate with frequencies between approximately 10−2  Hz and 103  Hz. ULDM signals with frequencies greater than ∼1  Hz exceed the expected Nyquist frequency of atom gradiometers, and so are affected by aliasing and related phenomena, including signal folding and spectral distortion. To facilitate the discovery of super-Nyquist ULDM signals, in this work we investigate the impact of these effects on parameter reconstruction using a robust likelihood-based framework. We demonstrate that accurate reconstruction of ULDM parameters can be achieved as long as the experimental frequency resolution is larger than the ULDM signal linewidth. Notably, as ULDM candidates whose frequencies differ by integer multiples of the sampling frequency are identified at the same aliased frequency, our discovery analysis recovers discrete islands in parameter space. Our study represents the first comprehensive exploration of aliasing in the context of dark matter direct detection and paves the way for enhanced ULDM detection strategies with atom gradiometers.
Original languageEnglish
Article number083016
JournalPhysical Review D - Particles, Fields, Gravitation and Cosmology
Issue number8
Publication statusPublished - 11 Oct 2023


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