New Focus Partners with JPL to Develop Atomic Clock Laser

Sept. 24, 2002
San Jose, CA, September 24, 2002 -- New Focus, Inc. has entered into an agreement to develop lasers for NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory (Pasadena, Calif.). Based on New Focus' existing tunable laser technology, the next generation laser will be used to selectively excite particular transitions of atomic cesium, enabling the production of a new generation of high-performance frequency standards.

San Jose, CA, September 24, 2002 -- New Focus, Inc. has entered into an agreement to develop lasers for NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory (Pasadena, Calif.). Based on New Focus' existing tunable laser technology, the next generation laser will be used to selectively excite particular transitions of atomic cesium, enabling the production of a new generation of high-performance frequency standards.

In the JPL application, the laser source will be used to "cool" the cesium atoms in a highly accurate atomic clock that will be carried by the Space Shuttle and placed on the International Space Station (ISS), as part of an experiment to test many of the predictions of Albert Einstein's Theory of Relativity.

The current New Focus tunable laser at 852 nanometers fits well with the extreme environmental demands of this application, providing high reliability, tunability and a narrow linewidth centered at the cesium atomic resonance wavelength. This next generation laser also has applications in the much larger market for commercial cesium clocks, including those deployed in GPS systems.

"We are extremely proud to be partnering with JPL to develop the lasers," said Dr. Timothy Day, chief technology officer and co-founder of New Focus. "As the industry leader in tunable lasers, it is an exciting challenge to build lasers that would be robust enough to withstand the space shuttle launch environment and operate for two years in space."

New Focus develops and manufactures innovative photonics solutions for the telecommunications, semiconductor, industrial and biomedical markets. New Focus' product portfolio includes tunable lasers for test-and-measurement applications, precision opto-mechanical photonics tools, and high-speed opto-electronic devices. Founded in 1990, the company is a recognized technology leader in creating advanced optical products for both commercial and research customers.

For more information, visit www.newfocus.com .

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