Atomic clocks, like those used in GPS satellites, are used to measure the distance between objects by timing how long it takes a signal to travel from Point A to Point B. For space exploration, atomic clocks must be extremely precise
General Atomics Electromagnetic Systems
June 25, 2019
Deep Space Atomic Clock (DSAC) Overview
Launched in June 2019, NASA’s Deep Space Atomic Clock is a critical step toward enabling spacecraft to safely navigate independently in deep space rather than rely on the time-consuming process of waiting to receive directions from Earth.
DSAC is a cross-cutting technology that has the potential to change the “calculus” of spaceflight.
NASA’s Deep Space Atomic Clock (DSAC) project is developing a reduced- size mercury ion atomic clock that is as stable as a ground clock, small enough to be hosted on a spacecraft, and able to operate in deep space.