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Thales to develop atomic clock to secure defence operations

The prime has teamed up with a French firm to develop atomic clock technology designed to bolster the resilience of defence capability impacted by a hostile attack.

The prime has teamed up with a French firm to develop atomic clock technology designed to bolster the resilience of defence capability impacted by a hostile attack.

Thales and Rennes-based company Syrlinks have signed a multi-year contract with the French defence procurement agency (DGA), aimed at developing a new generation of small, high-performance atomic clocks.

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The project, dubbed CHRONOS, is expected to support use across both civil and military applications.

Specifically, the high stability technology is tipped to secure defence electronics equipment, supporting continued operation in the event a GNSS signal is unavailable, including as a result of hostile jamming.

Ultimately, the project aims to enhance France’s technological sovereignty in GNSS-denied positioning, guidance, navigation and ECCM-protected, encrypted military communications.

Thales’ industrial facility in Vélizy-Villacoublay and the Thales Research & Technology centre in Palaiseau are expected to support the manufacture of the atomic clocks.

Syrlinks has been tasked with leveraging its experience developing satellite radiocommunications, radionavigation systems and miniature atomic clocks.

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The company’s products were previously selected to equip 650 satellites for US firm OneWeb.

As part of its contribution to the CHRONOS project, the company has been tasked with developing an electronic brain and guaranteeing its high-precision timing function.

Meanwhile, France’s CNRS will provide critical scientific support for this project via its SYRTE (Observatoire de Paris) and Femto-ST (Université de Franche-Comté) joint research units.

[Related: Thales to undertake drone surveillance trials at Sydney Airport ]

Thales to develop atomic clock to secure defence operations
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