Photo d'une table optique

The research lines at the Time-Frequency and Optical Metrology Centre include contributing to the international atomic time TAI, by developing the unique Swiss primary frequency standard FOCS-2 (with the Swiss National Institute of Metrology METAS), and research and development towards novel compact and miniature atomic clocks for future generations of satellite navigation systems or industrial applications. For most of its activities, the Centre studies and develops state-of-the-art laser systems, such as frequency-stabilized and low-noise lasers in the visible and infra-red regions.

The Centre’s activities on optical metrology and frequency combs include, in particular, novel ultrafast laser technologies based on waveguide lasers and on high-power thin-disk lasers for intra-cavity high harmonic generation to produce frequency combs in the extreme ultra-violet. It also contributes to expanding ultrafast laser technologies into the terahertz spectral region, and novel methods for frequency comb stabilization are under investigation.

Key competences and facilities of the Centre

  • Ultrafast lasers development and analysis
  • Various optical frequency combs systems
  • State-of-the-art ion beam sputtering (IBS) machine for custom optics fabrication
  • Cold-atoms science and applications
  • Noise and stability analysis for microwave/optical oscillators
  • Stabilization of microwave and optical oscillators
  • Laser spectroscopy and stabilization for sensing applications (e.g. LIDAR)
  • Vapour cell atomic clocks
  • Vapour cells manufacturing and characterisation
  • High-resolution CPT and double resonance spectroscopy in alkali vapour cells
  • Time & Frequency metrology
  • State-of-the-art reference Hydrogen maser and GPS timing receiver

Selected projects