Demonstration of a switchable damping system to allow low-noise operation of high-Q low-mass suspension systems

Jan-Simon Hennig*, Bryan W. Barr, Angus S. Bell, William Cunningham, Stefan L. Danilishin, Peter Dupej, Christian Graf, James Hough, Sabina H. Huttner, Russell Jones, Sean S. Leavey, Daniela Pascucci, Martin Sinclair, Borja Sorazu, Andrew Spencer, Sebastian Steinlechner, Kenneth A. Strain, Jennifer Wright, Teng Zhang, Stefan Hild

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review


Low-mass suspension systems with high-Q pendulum stages are used to enable quantum radiation pressure noise limited experiments. Utilizing multiple pendulum stages with vertical blade springs and materials with high-quality factors provides attenuation of seismic and thermal noise; however, damping of these high-Q pendulum systems in multiple degrees of freedom is essential for practical implementation. Viscous damping such as eddy-current damping can be employed, but it introduces displacement noise from force noise due to thermal fluctuations in the damping system. In this paper we demonstrate a passive damping system with adjustable damping strength as a solution for this problem that can be used for low-mass suspension systems without adding additional displacement noise in science mode. We show a reduction of the damping factor by a factor of 8 on a test suspension and provide a general optimization for this system.

Original languageEnglish
Article number122005
Number of pages5
JournalPhysical Review D
Issue number12
Publication statusPublished - 26 Dec 2017
Externally publishedYes

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