James Battat, Wellesley College

Title: Testing Fundamental Physics by Ranging to the Moon (Video)

Abstract: Lunar Laser Ranging has enabled comprehensive, precision tests of gravity for nearly 50 years.  I will discuss my work on the Apache Point Observatory Lunar Laser-ranging Operation (APOLLO), which achieves millimeter-precision measurements of the lunar orbit.  Such high-precision measurements, coupled with decades of archival data, provide exquisite constraints on gravitational physics. In fact, LLR currently provides the tightest bounds on the strong equivalence principle, the inverse square law of gravity at relevant scales, gravitomagnetic interactions, the time-rate of change of G and Lorentz symmetry in the gravitational sector.