Precision measurements of ultrasmall linear velocities of one of the mirrors in a Michelson interferometer are performed using two different weak-value techniques. We show that the technique of almost-balanced weak values (ABWV) offers practical advantages over the technique of weak-value amplification, resulting in larger signal-to-noise ratios and the possibility of longer integration times due to robustness to slow drifts. As an example of the performance of the ABWV protocol we report a velocity sensitivity of 60 fm/s after 40 h of integration time. The sensitivity of the Doppler shift due to the moving mirror is 150 nHz.
Bibliographical noteFunding Information:
This work was funded by the Army Research Office (Grant No. W911NF-12-1-0263), Northrop Grumman Corporation, and the Department of Physics and Astronomy at the University of Rochester.
© 2017 American Physical Society.