Phonon assisted Dark matter detector

Dark matter appears to contribute about one quarter of the matter-energy density in the universe and intense searches are probing the presence of a series of proposed dark matter candidates. Extending these searches to lower mass ranges, well below 1 GeV/c2, poses new challenges as rare interactions with standard model matter transfer progressively less energy to electrons and nuclei in detectors. We propose an approach for searches for light dark matter candidates based on phonon assisted desorption processes combined with quantum sensors for detection of desorption events based on tracking of quantum coherence. The intent of our proposed dark matter sensors is to extend the parameter space to energy transfers in rare interactions to as low as a few meV for detection of dark matter particles in the keV/c2 mass range.


Prof. Stephen A. LyonLyon's web page


Funding is provided by the Quantum Information Science Enabled Discovery (QuantISED) Program for High Energy Physics by the Office of Science of the U.S. Department of Energy.


  • S. A. Lyon, K. Castoria, E. Kleinbaum, Z. Qin, A. Persaud, T. Schenkel, K. Zurek, Single Phonon Detection for Dark Matter via Quantum Evaporation and Sensing of 3Helium. arXiv [hep-ex] (2022), (available at