When a GNSS failure occurs, dispatching personnel to a location to resolve an issue could take hours or even days. Critical Infrastructure operators rely on holdover clocks to provide valuable operational benefits and for service continuity during such conditions.
There are a wide variety of oscillator types in use today that have been deployed for the purpose of holdover, each providing a different performance/cost profile. It’s important to have a clear understanding of the accuracy and period of time that the holdover is needed for and the ability of the holdover clock to maintain the needed performance given changing environmental conditions, particularly temperature variations.
Microsemi has leveraged significant advances in miniaturization and integration to design the world’s first commercially available miniature atomic clocks. These Quantum™ atomic clocks include the newly enhanced Miniature Atomic Clock (MAC) that provides a new generation of rubidium clock technology and the Chip Scale Atomic Clock (CSAC), the world’s smallest atomic reference that achieves historic breakthroughs in size, weight, and power consumption.
Previously, ovenized crystal oscillators (OCXO) were a popular choice for holdover prior to Quantum atomic clock technology, even though rubidium oscillators in particular have proven to provide far better holdover performance. However, now with the new Quantum MAC (rubidium based), time error performance, over temperature, is now possible at an economical price for time holdover applications. In fact, the performance advantage of the Quantum MAC as compared to an OCXO has proven to be 5 to 8 times better.
This improved holdover performance provides tremendous benefits in reducing truck rolls and repair calls for Critical Infrastructure operators. The previous plot provides an example of the performance advantage of a Quantum rubidium MAC rubidium versus legacy OCXO technology.
Quantum clocks are utilized across many Microsemi system-level products providing unmatched holdover performance, maintaining reliable service over multiple days upon disruption or complete loss of GNSS.
This holdover is particularly important for Critical Infrastructure operation in support of timing and synchronization applications, including wireless base stations, wire line network infrastructure, defense systems, and test and measurement devices.
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Please contact me Greg.Wolff@Microsemi.com personally for more information or if I may be of assistance. Connect with me on LinkedIn too.
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