Chinese scientists have developed a cold atomic clock

They will help accurately measure time in space.

Punctuality is especially important in space, but all earth clocks have some degree of inaccuracy. Even atomic clocks, which are based on ultra-precise vibrations of atoms, are imperfect. Therefore, Chinese specialists from the Shanghai Institute of Optics and Precision Mechanics developed a “cold” atomic clock that successfully passed 15-month tests in space, reports LiveScience.

They differ in that before measuring the oscillations, the atoms are cooled by a laser to an almost complete zero – this makes the oscillations more stable and accurate. In addition, for complete accuracy, the vibrations of atoms are measured during free fall, when they do not interact with anything. On Earth, such conditions are almost impossible, but quite real in space with the use of microgravity devices.

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