Bringing the accuracy and stability of atomic clock technology, the Microchip SA.45s CSAC is the world’s first commercially available Chip Scale Atomic Clock which achieves unmatched breakthroughs in reduced size, weight and power consumption.
Accuracy and Stability of Atomic Clock for Portable Applications
With a volume of 16 cm3, the SA.45s is only one-third the size of other atomic clocks that are noted for their small form factor, and it is smaller than many oven-controlled crystal oscillators (OCXOs). While today’s “low-power” atomic clocks consume 5W in the steady state, the SA.45s CSAC’s power consumption of <120 mW is a 40× improvement – a true breakthrough. Even most OCXOs consume 1.5W to 2W steady state, giving the SA.45s a 10×–15× advantage. And as a true atomic clock, the SA.45s has an aging rate of <9E–10/month.
Realising a chip scale atomic clock with such small size and low power consumption required multiple innovations in multiple disciplines, including (among others) semiconductor laser technology, silicon processing, vacuum-packaging, and firmware algorithms.
The SA.45s CSAC enables a new class of atomic clock applications defined by portability. These applications include geophysical sensors, backpack IED jammers, backpack military radios, unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs), and military GPS receivers. It offers longer battery life than previous technologies and maintains high accuracy without GPS or other external time references (eg GLONASS, Galileo, BeiDou) – all in addition to very small size and weight.
Chip scale is a brand new category of atomic clock, both in terms of the profile of applications for which it is suited, and in terms of the technology on which it is based.
SA.45s employs coherent population trapping (CPT) to interrogate an atomic frequency. A laster illuminates atoms in a resonance cell with polarized radiation at two sidebands separated by the atomic resonance frequency. The atoms are excited to a non-scattering coherent superposition state from which further scattering is suppressed. The small size and low power of the CSAC is enabled by a novel electronic architecture in which much of the functionality of conventional atomic clocks has been implemented in firmware rather than hardware.
The Chronos difference
Contact our team today for specialist advice and more information about how the SA.45s CSAC enables a new class of atomic clock applications defined by portability.
<120mW power consumption
±5.0E-11 accuracy at shipment
<1E-11 @1000s Short Term Stability (Allan Deviation)
<9E-10 /mo Aging Rate (Typical)
-10oC to +70oC Operating Temperature
10MHz square wave and 1PPS, both in a CMOS 0V to 3.3V format
1PPS input for synchronisation
RS-232 interface for monitoring and control
Space version available (090-02984-007)
Lead-free RoHS compliant version also available (090-03240-001 and 003