Progress in atomic fountains at LNE-SYRTE

Jocelyne Guena, Michel Abgrall, Daniele Rovera, Philippe Laurent, Baptiste Chupin, Michel Lours, Giorgio Santarelli, Peter Rosenbusch, Michael E. Tobar, Ruoxin Li, Kurt Gibble, Andre Clairon, Sebastien Bize

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258 Scopus citations


We give an overview of the work done with the Laboratoire National de Metrologie et d'Essais-Systemes de Reference Temps-Espace (LNE-SYRTE) fountain ensemble during the last five years. After a description of the clock ensemble, comprising three fountains, FO1, FO2, and FOM, and the newest developments, we review recent studies of several systematic frequency shifts. This includes the distributed cavity phase shift, which we evaluate for the FO1 and FOM fountains, applying the techniques of our recent work on FO2. We also report calculations of the microwave lensing frequency shift for the three fountains, review the status of the blackbody radiation shift, and summarize recent experimental work to control microwave leakage and spurious phase perturbations. We give current accuracy budgets. We also describe several applications in time and frequency metrology: fountain comparisons, calibrations of the international atomic time, secondary representation of the SI second based on the 87Rb hyperfine frequency, absolute measurements of optical frequencies, tests of the T2L2 satellite laser link, and review fundamental physics applications of the LNE-SYRTE fountain ensemble. Finally, we give a summary of the tests of the PHARAO cold atom space clock performed using the FOM transportable fountain.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)391-410
Number of pages20
JournalIEEE Transactions on Ultrasonics, Ferroelectrics, and Frequency Control
Issue number3
StatePublished - Mar 2012

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Instrumentation
  • Acoustics and Ultrasonics
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering


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