India is going to house the third LIGO detector, at a site in Nanded, Maharashtra. IIT Madras is one of the leading experimental groups, working on different aspects of research and development for LIGO-India
2 micron lasers
LIGO observatories today use highly coherent laser source at wavelength 1 µm at high power levels. Among other significant changes, advanced LIGO Voyager proposes to reduce two-photon absorption in silicon mirrors by replacing the 1 µm laser source with a 2µm laser. Such LIGO-class lasers are not yet available in 2µm wavelength. This project aims to minimize the phase noise of an available semiconductor laser at 2µm, characterize the same and design and demonstrate high power narrow line laser.
Optical levers are used to measure small tilts in LIGO's suspended mirrors that form the arms of the Michelson interferometer. We aim to improve upon the sensitivity of the optical levers by correlating the speckle patters of light reflected off the mirror.
A table top Michelson interferometer is used to train students and staff on the different aspects of LIGO. Each arm has a length of 1 m. Simple experiments such as locking of the laser to the cavity, acoustic signal recovery and even quantum interference are possible on such a kit.