Broadband electrical action sensing techniques with conducting wires for low-mass dark matter axion detection

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14 Citations (Scopus)


Due to the inverse Primakoff effect, it has been shown that when axions mix with a DC B→-field, the resulting electrical action will produce an AC electromotive force, which oscillates at the Compton frequency of the axion. As in standard electrodynamics, this electromotive force may be modelled as an oscillating effective impressed magnetic current boundary source. We use this result to calculate the sensitivity of new experiments to low-mass axions using the quasi-static technique, defined as when the Compton wavelength of the axion is greater than the dimensions of the experiment. First, we calculate the current induced in a straight conducting wire (electric dipole antenna) in the limit where the DC B→-field can be considered as spatially constant and show that it has a sensitivity proportional to the axion mass. Following this we extend the topology by making use of the full extent of the spatially varying DC B→-field of the electromagnet. This is achieved by transforming the 1D conducting wire to a 2D winding with inductance, to fully link the effective magnetic current boundary source and hence couple to the full axion induced electrical action (or electromotive force). We investigate two different topologies: The first uses a single winding, and couples to the effective short circuit current generated in the winding, which is optimally read out using a sensitive low impedance SQUID amplifier: The second technique uses multiple windings, with every turn effectively increasing the induced voltage, which is proportional to the winding number. The read out of this configuration is optimised by implementing a cryogenic low-noise high input impedance voltage amplifier. The end result is the realisation of new Broadband Electrical Action Sensing Techniques with orders of magnitude improved sensitivity over current low-mass axion experiments, with a sensitivity linearly proportional to the axion–photon coupling and capable of detecting QCD dark matter axions in the mass range of 10−12−10−8eV and below.

Original languageEnglish
Article number100624
JournalPhysics Of The Dark Universe
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2020


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