MICROSCOPE satellite test of general relativity: No deviations from the equivalence principle at the 10⁻¹⁴ level

Vue d’artiste du microsatellite Microscope, placé en orbite en avril 2016 pour tester le principe de l’universalité de la chute libre ou principe d’équivalence. © CNES/Virtual-IT, 2017

While the best measure of the principle of equivalence had not been exceeded for 10 years, the first results of the CNES MICROSCOPE satellite, equipped with ONERA accelerometers, make it possible today to be 10 times better. They demonstrate, with unparalleled precision, 2.10-14, that bodies fall into emptiness with the same acceleration. The principle of equivalence remains at this unshakable stage, it is nothing less than a new confirmation of the General Relativity proposed by Albert Einstein more than a century ago. This result obtained by ONERA and the teams of Geoazur (CNRS-OCA-Côte d’Azur-IRD University) with the contribution of CNES, ZARM is reported in the prestigious scientific journal PRL.


MICROSCOPE Mission: First Results of a Space Test of the Equivalence Principle

Pierre Touboul et al.

Phys. Rev. Lett. 119, 231101 – Published 4 December 2017


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