1 September 2015 Miniature atomic clock for space applications
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Abstract
This paper presents a novel architecture for a high performance atomic clock based on the use of miniature optical whispering gallery mode (WGM) resonators. Following the approach of stabilizing a laser local oscillator to an optical transition in an atom or ion, as used in advanced atomic clock, a semiconductor laser is used for stabilization to the D1 line of Rb atoms, held in a small vapor cell. The laser is self-injection locked to a WGM resonator to reduce its linewidth. To produce the RF output of the clock, a second WGM resonator excited with a second cw semiconductor laser produces an optical frequency comb that is demodulated on a fast photodiode. Locking the resonator that generates the frequency comb to the laser stabilized to the Rb transition transfers the stability of the atomic transition to the RF output of the clock. In this way, a miniature all-optical atomic clock is realized. Details of the operation of the clock and application of the architecture to other atomic systems, such as a ytterbium ion, will be described.
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Lute Maleki, Lute Maleki, Anatoliy Savchenkov, Anatoliy Savchenkov, Wei Liang, Wei Liang, Danny Eliyahu, Danny Eliyahu, Vladimir Ilchenko, Vladimir Ilchenko, Elijah Dale, Elijah Dale, Andrey Matsko, Andrey Matsko, } "Miniature atomic clock for space applications", Proc. SPIE 9616, Nanophotonics and Macrophotonics for Space Environments IX, 96160L (1 September 2015); doi: 10.1117/12.2189218; https://doi.org/10.1117/12.2189218
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