The NIST Atomic Devices and Instrumentation (ADI) Group designs, builds, and characterizes innovative miniature atomic instruments and sensors using precision atomic spectroscopy and fabrication techniques traditionally used in the field of microelectronics and micro-electromechanical systems (MEMS).
Work to develop chip-scale atomic clocks, a technology pioneered at NIST between 2001 and 2005, demonstrated an atomic clock physics package with a volume below 10 mm3 running on 75 mW of power. The first chip-scale atomic clock physics package, constructed and first operated at NIST in 2003, is currently on display at the Smithsonian Air and Space museum in Washington, D. C. This work was first published in Applied Physics Letters and a patent on the device was issued by the US Patent and Trademark Office in 2004. Chip-scale atomic clocks have been commercialized and are beginning to be used in applications ranging from GPS and wireless communications to oil exploration.
Current research is focused on three main areas.
Please visit the links below for more information.
NIST-on-a-Chip in the ADI Group—We are developing core technology tools to enable chip-scale standards that realize a broad range of base and derived SI units in compact, manufacturable packages.
Vapor Cell Devices—We are developing microfabricated high-performance atomic magnetometers for magnetic anomaly detection, nuclear magnetic resonance and biomagnetics.
Cold-Atom Devices—The cooling of atoms to microkelvin temperatures using lasers is currently enabling a new generation of precision instruments that take advantage of the long interaction times and weak …
Time and Frequency Division
We have regular openings for graduate students and post-docs. Please e-mail John Kitching for more information