Volume 84, Number 3, November 2008
Article Number 31002
Number of page(s) 5
Section The Physics of Elementary Particles and Fields
Published online 31 October 2008
EPL, 84 (2008) 31002
DOI: 10.1209/0295-5075/84/31002

Searching hidden-sector photons inside a superconducting box

J. Jaeckel1 and J. Redondo2

1   Institute for Particle Physics Phenomenology, Durham University - Durham DH1 3LE, UK, EU
2   Deutsches Elektronen Synchrotron - Notkestraße 85, 22607 Hamburg, Germany, EU

received 7 July 2008; accepted in final form 1 October 2008; published November 2008
published online 31 October 2008

We propose an experiment to search for extra “hidden-sector" U(1) gauge bosons with small gauge kinetic mixing $\chi $ with the ordinary photon, predicted by many extensions of the Standard Model. The setup consists of a highly sensitive magnetometer inside a superconducting shielding which are in turn placed inside a strong (but sub-critical) magnetic field. Photon $\hbox{--} $ hidden-sector photon $\hbox{--} $ photon oscillations would allow the magnetic field to “leak” into the shielded volume and register on the magnetometer. In our setup the magnetometer directly measures the field strength ($\propto$$\chi $2), improving the sensitivity over “light-shining-through-walls experiments which measure the regeneration probability ($\propto$ $\chi $4). In the mass range 2 $\mu$ eV $\lesssim$ m $_{\gamma ^\prime }$ $\lesssim$ 200 meV the projected sensitivity is in the $\chi $ ~ 5 $\times$ 10-9 to $\chi $ ~ 10-6 range. This surpasses current astrophysical and laboratory limits by several orders of magnitude —ample room to discover new physics.

14.70.Pw - Other gauge bosons.
12.20.Fv - Experimental tests.
41.20.Gz - Magnetostatics; magnetic shielding, magnetic induction, boundary-value problems.

© EPLA 2008