[time-nuts] NIST Optical lattice clocks

Jonatan Walck jwalck at netnod.se
Thu May 30 04:17:20 EDT 2013

Theory behind Ytterbium-based optical lattice clocks have been mentioned
on this list before[1] but these results were new so I thought I'd share

NIST released a paper[2] (link to PDF[3] on the right side on arxiv) a
week ago on results from two optical lattice clocks[4] with impressive
results. Even by time-nuts standards.;)

"A measurement comparing these systems demonstrates an
unprecedented atomic clock instability of 1.6 × 10−18 after only 7 hours
of averaging."

The ADEV plot of one of these can be found on p. 14. Instead of posting
more spoilers I'll let you all read the paper in all its glory amongst

No mentions of when standards like these could start reporting to BIPM
and contribute to TAI but I guess that's some way off. As someone
mentioned to me regarding new atomic standards (at that time atomic
fountains) and mean time between failure: "Comes with physisist
attached." Now that I think of it that might've been from slides
presented by Ludlow himself.:)

// jwalck

[1] "[time-nuts] OT: The tick-tock of the optical clock ...."
[1] " An atomic clock with $10^{-18}$ instability"
[2] http://arxiv.org/pdf/1305.5869v1
[3] "Physicists Unveil World’s Most Precise Clock (And a Twin to Compare
It Against)"

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