[time-nuts] hm H Maser

Bob Camp kb8tq at n1k.org
Tue Jan 10 07:39:29 EST 2017


> On Jan 10, 2017, at 2:45 AM, Dr. David Kirkby (Kirkby Microwave Ltd) <drkirkby at kirkbymicrowave.co.uk> wrote:
> Once 9 Jan 2017 12:59, "Bob Camp" <kb8tq at n1k.org> wrote:
>> Hi
>> Ok here are some rough numbers:
>>> On Jan 9, 2017, at 4:35 AM, Dr. David Kirkby (Kirkby Microwave Ltd) <
> drkirkby at kirkbymicrowave.co.uk> wrote:
>>> It would be interesting to see your breakdown of the costs and man hours
>>> for an H2 maser. I suspect that others would find cheaper/faster
> solutions.
>> $100M for the H2
>> $25M for the Rb
> With all due respect,  and I apprectiate you have a good knowledge of this
> field, but that's not a breakdown of costs or man hours I wanted to see,
> but a cost which appears to be plucked from the air.

Hardly plucked from the air. The last Rb design that I was involved with was 
roughly 5X that expensive. 

> There's a BIG difference between a volunteer effort where
> * Salaries are not paid
> * Items of test equipment are likely to be borrowed or people provide
> access to them for no charge etc,
> * Academics are likely to provide consultancy for free, in return for being
> on papers published.
> * Software licenses could probably be obtained free,  or enough people get
> trials.

That’s where the 5:1 cost reduction comes from. 

> compared to a commercial company building a maser where
> * Salaries are paid
> * All equipment is purchased new
> * Bench power supplies with 3.5 digit displays are sent out for calibration
> each year.
> *  No outside body will do anything except at a commercial rate.
> * Flights are booked for meetings which could be done over the Internet.
> * High end software licenses are huge.
>> $500M for the fountain.
> But on what basis do you arrive at that figure?

The numbers that the people who have done it come up with when you talk to them. 

>> To get sponsorship for anything remotely close to those numbers, you
>> need to have some massively good credentials.
>> Bob
> Yes agreed at $500M. But someone like Tom, who does have massively good
> credentials, could perhaps get $500,000, and perhaps that wisely spent
> could get a fountain built.  Without knowing how you arrive at $500M, it is
> not possible for anyone to look at ways of shaving that cost.

This is *not* a cheap field to be doing things in ….


> The Lovell Telescope at Jodrell Bank in the UK was built on a shoestring
> budget. It was at the time the world's  largest steerable radio telephone.
> Half a century later only 2 larger ones have been built.
> Maybe I am too nieve.
> Dave.
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