[time-nuts] Atomic Clocks: It is important that they keep good time, Part 1

Poul-Henning Kamp phk at phk.freebsd.dk
Fri Jan 4 04:33:20 EST 2019

In message <CS1PR8401MB10780BD06FFE6BB5A74DF1BC8C8E0 at CS1PR8401MB1078.NAMPRD84.P
ROD.OUTLOOK.COM>, "Rice, Hugh (IPH Writing Systems)" writes:

>The clock display on a HP Cesium Standard is a bit of a gimmick.
>The legend I was told:  An Admiral was touring a nuclear submarine,
>and was being shown the "Atomic Clocks"  in the navigation section,
>and said:  "If the Navy is going to pay 40 grand for an atomic
>clock, I damn well better be able to set my watch by it."

I once showed the CEO our brand new $100K cisco AGS+ router.  It
was kitted out to the hilt with ethernet interfaces, but the front
side he saw had only the orange bridge siloutte and a single green
power LED.  He looked at it and then said "For that kind of money,
couldn't they at least make it blink ?"

> Some poor engineer had to come up with a solution that fit the
> electronics in the round hole used by the Patek clock.   3 circular
> PCAs were used, electrically connected with pins from one PCB to
> the other, so it would be a drop in replacement.    It was a hack
> of epic proportions.      Hard to manufacture, expensive, power
> hungry.  But it worked and was reliable.

Well, about that...



(I still have spare PCBs available)

Poul-Henning Kamp       | UNIX since Zilog Zeus 3.20
phk at FreeBSD.ORG         | TCP/IP since RFC 956
FreeBSD committer       | BSD since 4.3-tahoe    
Never attribute to malice what can adequately be explained by incompetence.

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