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A solid-state atomic frequency standard


White, Christopher John (2005) A solid-state atomic frequency standard. Dissertation (Ph.D.), California Institute of Technology.


The thesis describes a new class of frequency reference. The frequency source uses the same operating principle as a passive atomic frequency standard; however, the device is entirely solid-state, removing many cost and reliability issues associated with gas-phase atomic clocks. More specifically, the "atomic resonance" is derived from zero-field magnetic resonance transitions of the vanadium ion in a cubic crystal lattice. The characteristics of these resonances will be described in detail. The apparatus for measuring the "atomic" resonances uses a radio-frequency resonant cavity and frequency discriminator circuit. Using integrated circuits, the radio-frequency signal processing functions can be implemented at very low cost in a reliable manufacturing process. We discuss the system design and the measurement sensitivity. Advantages of the new frequency reference may include immunity to vibration and reduced aging compared to crystal oscillators.

Item Type:Thesis (Dissertation (Ph.D.))
Subject Keywords:atomic clocks; crystal oscillators; frequency control; frequency standards
Degree Grantor:California Institute of Technology
Division:Engineering and Applied Science
Major Option:Electrical Engineering
Thesis Availability:Public (worldwide access)
Research Advisor(s):
  • Hajimiri, Ali
Thesis Committee:
  • Hajimiri, Ali (chair)
  • Weitekamp, Daniel P.
  • Rutledge, David B.
  • Roukes, Michael Lee
  • Weinreb, Sander
  • Bridges, William B.
Defense Date:16 May 2005
Non-Caltech Author Email:cjwhite (AT)
Record Number:CaltechETD:etd-05242005-172142
Persistent URL:
Default Usage Policy:No commercial reproduction, distribution, display or performance rights in this work are provided.
ID Code:5197
Deposited By: Imported from ETD-db
Deposited On:26 May 2005
Last Modified:26 Dec 2012 03:15

Thesis Files

PDF (thesis_ch1.pdf) - Final Version
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PDF (thesis_ch2.pdf) - Final Version
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PDF (thesis_ch3.pdf) - Final Version
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PDF (thesis_ch4.pdf) - Final Version
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PDF (thesis_ch5.pdf) - Final Version
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PDF (thesis_ch6.pdf) - Final Version
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