IIT Professor Daniel Kaplan Receives Gift of $500,000 Apparatus to Measure WEP, Organizes MAP Meeting

The Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics in Cambridge, Mass., has donated a Principle of Equivalence Measurement (POEM) apparatus to Illinois Institute of Technology for the study of the weak equivalence principle (WEP). It is scheduled to arrive at Illinois Tech on a 53-foot truck on Monday, May 18 and will be housed in the basement of Tech South. Daniel Kaplan, professor of physics, arranged for the donation and will lead experiments on POEM with undergraduate and graduate students in collaboration with Derrick Mancini and Jeff Terry, professors of physics. The equipment is integral to their IPRO on antimatter gravity.

“The weak equivalence principle is fundamental to the General Theory of Relativity but is violated in many proposed alternative theories of gravity. It thus makes a great target for new experimental tests,” said Kaplan. “This equipment will enable unique and exciting research at IIT.”

Kaplan also is organizing and chairing the Muon Accelerator Program (MAP) 2015 Spring Meeting on Monday, May 18 through Friday, May 22 at Fermilab. It will highlight work carried out by MAP over the past three years to enable high-energy physics capabilities based on muon accelerator technology.

A meeting highlight will be a talk by Carlo Rubbia, who received the Nobel Prize in physics in 1984 with Simon van der Meer for enabling the discovery of the W and Z particles.

At the meeting, Kaplan will also present results on the Muon Ionization Cooling Experiment (MICE), featuring data analysis by physics undergraduates Michael Drews and Miles Winter.