[time-nuts] Relationship of frequency to stability

Bob kb8tq kb8tq at n1k.org
Wed Jun 7 11:11:55 EDT 2017


For something like a crystal oscillator, there is a relation between frequency and resonator Q. That
gives you a loose correlation between stability and oscillator frequency. Beyond that, there are 
substantial differences between the technologies you are comparing. That is the main source of
the differences you observe. You could extend the sequence to include trapped optical ion clocks
and continue the series …


> On Jun 7, 2017, at 10:25 AM, John Sloan <jsloan at diag.com> wrote:
> SHORT VERSION: I’ve been trying to figure out what the relationship is between frequency and stability - if there is one - that is, why oscillators with higher frequencies tend to be more stable.
> LONG VERSION: I got into this by building a home-brew NTP server using a cesium-disciplined oscillator, specifically a Jackson Labs GPS-disciplined oscillator board that incorporates a Microsemi Chip Scale Atomic Clock. I started thinking about the 9,192,631,770Hz oscillator in the CSAC, the quartz oscillator in my $10 Casio wristwatch that is perhaps 32768 Hz, the 8 Hz balance wheel in my Rolex GMT Master II, the 6 Hz balance wheel in my Hamilton Jazzmaster, and the maybe 5 Hz of some of my less expensive mechanical wristwatches. In my personal experience, there is a correlation. I kinda figure this has to do somehow with the Q calculation, but it’s just not happening for me, math-wise. For example, arguments about relative error seem to cancel out because of the greater number of ticks per second. I’m putting a talk together and would like to rationalize this somehow. Googling hasn’t provided any insights so far. Links to references would be great. Thanks for any pointers!
> --
> J. L. Sloan            Digital Aggregates Corp.
> +1 303 940 9064 (O)    3440 Youngfield St. #209
> +1 303 489 5178 (M)    Wheat Ridge CO 80033 USA
> jsloan at diag.com        http://www.diag.com <http://www.diag.com/>
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