We discuss the feasibility of realizing a cold atom space clock with counter-propagating cold atoms in microgravity. The design of the space clock is based on an atomic beam clock with Ramsey cavity, except that magneto-optical trap (MOT) is placed at each side. Cold atoms are launched simultaneously from the MOTs at both sides of the clock and they move at the counter-direction towards each other. The velocity of the launched atoms is precisely controlled to Ramsauer-Townsend resonance so that no additional collision frequency shift takes place. Such configuration can efficiently cancel the frequency shift resulting from cavity phase shift and increase the signal-to-noise ratio (SNR).
© 2010 Chinese Optics LettersPDF Article