DARPA hosts Proposers Day on new atomic clock

January 13, 2016  - By
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Image: GPS World

The Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) is holding a Proposers Day on Feb. 1 to inform potential contractors about the Atomic Clock with Enhanced Stability (ACES) program.

ACES is a potential $50 million program that seeks to develop battery-powered atomic clocks that work to provide warfighters with synchronization and precision timing capabilities during navigation, communications, electronic warfare and reconnaissance missions in the event of a GPS shutdown.

The registration deadline for the Proposers Day is 5 p.m. EST on Jan. 25. The Proposers Day will be held Feb. 1 from 9:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. EST at the DARPA Conference Center, 675 N. Randolph Street, Arlington, Virginia 22203.

The host is Robert Lutwak, ACES program manager at DARPA. In 2012, GPS World awarded Lutwak its Leadership Award for Products. 

The meeting will provide information and promote additional discussion on the ACES program, address questions from potential proposers, and provide an opportunity for potential proposers to share their capabilities and ideas for teaming arrangements.

The ACES Proposers Day will include overview presentations by government personnel, technical presentations by potential proposers and collaborators, and an open poster session to facilitate interaction and teaming.

According to the Department of Defense (DoD), “Precision timing and synchronization is essential to DoD communications, navigation, reconnaissance, and electronic warfare systems. The requirements for timing precision and stability have grown increasingly demanding as DoD systems have evolved towards distributed engagement and surveillance architectures, and this trend is expected to continue for the foreseeable future.

“The ACES program aims to develop portable, battery‐powered atomic clocks with stability, repeatability, and environmental sensitivity approaching that of laboratory‐grade cesium beam frequency standards. This will be accomplished through research, development and integration of reduced SWaP components and technologies for advanced atomic physics interrogation techniques. These include, but are not limited to, laser‐cooled and magneto‐optically trapped atomic samples, and RF‐trapped ion samples, as well as interrogation of less environmentally‐sensitive microwave and optical transitions.”

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