Future directions in the microwave cavity search for dark matter axions

T. M. Shokair*, J. Root, K. A. Van Bibber, L. B. Brubaker, Y. V. Gurevich, S. B. Cahn, S. K. Lamoreaux, M. A. Anil, K. W. Lehnert, B. K. Mitchell, Phillip A. Reed, G. Carosi

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

57 Citations (Scopus)


The axion is a light pseudoscalar particle which suppresses CP-violating effects in strong interactions and also happens to be an excellent dark matter candidate. Axions constituting the dark matter halo of our galaxy may be detected by their resonant conversion to photons in a microwave cavity permeated by a magnetic field. The current generation of the microwave cavity experiment has demonstrated sensitivity to plausible axion models, and upgrades in progress should achieve the sensitivity required for a definitive search, at least for low mass axions. However, a comprehensive strategy for scanning the entire mass range, from 1-1000 μeV, will require significant technological advances to maintain the needed sensitivity at higher frequencies. Such advances could include sub-quantum-limited amplifiers based on squeezed vacuum states, bolometers, and/or superconducting microwave cavities. The Axion Dark Matter eXperiment at High Frequencies (ADMX-HF) represents both a pathfinder for first data in the 20-100 μeV range (~5-25 GHz), and an innovation test-bed for these concepts.

Original languageEnglish
Article number1443004
Pages (from-to)1-19
Number of pages19
JournalInternational Journal of Modern Physics A
Issue number19
Publication statusPublished - 30 Jul 2014
Externally publishedYes


  • Axion
  • dark matter
  • microwave cavity
  • superconductivity
  • Josephson parametric amplifiers

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