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Swiss Symposium – Light & Time

Details are subject to change.

  • Organiser

    Steve Lecomte, CSEM, Switzerland

  • Day & Time

    19.09.2022, 13:30 – 17:30

  • Location

    Room Boston

  • Description

    Switzerland, while a small country, has a long tradition of excellence in Science and Technology with recognized worldwide impact. This tradition is perpetrated by research made in public institutions and cutting-edge technical products developed and commercialized by companies. In this symposium, prominent examples, arranged in an appealing program, will be presented by leading actors. The different subjects, providing a link to current and future optical communication technologies, will cover industrial atomic clocks, time and frequency dissemination in science and industry, brilliant light sources from synchrotron and free-electron lasers, and optical frequency combs as instrument calibrator for exoplanet search.

  • Programme

    13:30 – 13:45: Introduction
    13:45 – 14:15: How optical fiber networks contribute to the realization and to the dissemination of improved time scales and reference frequencies?, Antoine Jallageas, METAS, Switzerland
    14:15 – 14:45: GPS-over-Fiber: Challenges and applications, Stephan Hunziker, Huber+Suhner, Switzerland
    14:45 – 15:15: Atomic Clocks Development at Orolia Switzerland, Nil Almat, Orolia, Switzerland 

    Coffee break (30 min)

    15:45 – 16:15: Quantum information processing with trapped ions using integrated photonics, Jonathan Home, ETH Zurich, Switzerland
    16:15 – 16:45: Brilliant light from free electrons, Gabriel Aeppli, PSI, Switzerland
    16:45 – 17:15: Frequency rulers for astronomical spectroscopy, Ewelina Obrzud, CSEM, Switzerland
    17:15 – 17:30: Closing

  • Speakers

    Speaker 1: Antoine Jallageas, METAS, Switzerland
    Title: How optical fiber networks contribute to the realization and to the dissemination of improved time scales and reference frequencies?
    Abstract: Time and Frequencies have always played a fundamental role in research and in everyday life. For several decades, atomic clocks, together with satellite communication systems, have been at the heart of international networks for the dissemination of highly accurate reference signals. However, the development of optical clocks with improved accuracy and the ever-increasing need for accuracy and reliability are driving the development of improved time and frequency dissemination methods. In this presentation, we will show how the application of optical fiber networks will allow improving time and frequency dissemination services for various applications, like metrology, fintech or fundamental research.
    Biography: Antoine Jallageas was born in Lille, France, in 1987. After a B. Sc. Degree and a M. Sc. Degree in atomic physics and photonics from the University of Lille, he received a Ph.D. degree from the University of Neuchâtel in 2017 for his work on the Swiss caesium primary frequency standard FoCS-2. Since 2017, Antoine is research scientist in the Photonics, time and frequency laboratory at the Swiss Federal Institute of Metrology, METAS in Bern. He is in charge of the realization and of the dissemination of the Swiss time scale UTC(CH), of the maintain of FoCS-2 and is also active in research projects.

    Speaker 2: Stephan Hunziker, Huber+Suhner, Switzerland
    Title: GPS-over-Fiber: Challenges and applications
    Abstract: GPS/GNSS application scenarios and their potential for fiber-optic GPS signal distribution as well as various implementation options for these links (MM, SM, power-over-fiber) will be discussed. The basic system design is based on a generic link budget which will be presented. Potential limitations and sources of performance degradation of such links are discussed. The first power-over-fiber based GPS link on the market introduced by Huber+Suhner and a related signal distribution concept are presented, its performance is compared with a standard active GPS antenna. Related topics (as e.g. fiber-optic GPS repeaters) and future developments are briefly addressed.
    Biography: Diploma and PhD (1998) in EE at ETH Zurich. Working as an R+D engineer in industrial and research environments on microwave and photonic systems, subsystems and devices such as optical receivers for CATV networks (Synchronous, USA), system and subsystem design for coherent optical intersatellite links (Contraves Space/now Thales-Alenia Space, CH), VCSEL and TOSA/ROSA development for high-speed datacom/interconnects (Avalon Photonics/now II-VI, CH), radio-over-fiber link and system design for tunnel radio applications (Comlab, CH), microwave and pulsed laser based timing + sync research and system/subsystem design for free electron lasers (PSI, CH), design of radio-/GPS/power-over-fiber links up to 40GHz (Huber+Suhner, CH).

    Speaker 3: Nil Almat, Orolia, Switzerland
    Title: Atomic Clocks Development at Orolia Switzerland
    Abstract: Orolia Switzerland is part of the group Orolia, world leader in Resilient PNT (Positioning Navigation and Timing). In today’s world, a large number of applications rely on GNSS signals but those signals are not always accurate or available. The job of Orolia is to make them virtually fail-safe for critical applications in defense and commercial industries worldwide by proposing a large portfolio of components, instruments and simulator. Atomic clocks are the first pilar to resilent PNT however nowadays low SWaP (Size, Weight and Power) are required for application as timecards for example. Other applications as defense require operating in harsh environment with the lowest environmental sensitivity. Orolia Switzerland developed clocks based on mercury and rubidium atoms to access those previous markets. The presentation will report on the miniature Rubidium Oscillator (mRO-50™) and Mercury Ion Clock (clock).
    Biography: Nil Almat received her BSc and MSc degree in microengineering from École Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne in 2014 and her PhD degree in physics from Université de Neuchâtel in 2020. In 2015, she worked as a Research and Development Engineer at Alpes Lasers in Neuchâtel and was responsible for the development and optimisation of various test benches for spectral characterization of laser diodes. In 2016, she joined the Laboratoire Temps-Fréquence at the University of Neuchâtel for her PhD work on the metrological characterization of frequency instability sources of high-performance Rb atomic clocks. She developed and studied a double-resonance rubidium vapor-cell clock using a frequency-doubled telecom laser. In 2022, she joined Orolia Switzerland as a scientist. She works on the development of the new generation of compact atomic clocks including the passive H maser and Hg ion trap clock.

    Speaker 4: Jonathan Home, ETH Zurich, Switzerland
    Title: Quantum information processing with trapped ions using integrated photonics
    Abstract: Trapped ions are a leading candidate for realizing a quantum computer, having excellent coherence as well as the highest fidelity gates demonstrated in any platform. However reaching useful computation is likely to require many thousands of quantum systems, which places a strong focus on methods to scale these systems up. I will describe how the use of integrated photonics can be a key component in bridging the divide between current-day systems and the types of large scale devices which will be required for quantum computers. I will show recent results in which we performed the first conditional logic gates on two trapped-ion qubits using integrated optics, and give perspectives on what is required to take these systems further.
    Biography: Jonathan Home is a professor at ETH Zürich, who is a pioneer in the area of quantum computing with trapped atomic ions. His group has demonstrated a number of key primatives for quantum computing, including performing the first entangling gates on ions using ion traps with integrated silicon-nitride photonic waveguides. For his work Jonathan has received many prizes, including the APS Landauer-Bennett Award in quantum computing and a TED Fellowship.

    Speaker 5: Gabriel Aeppli, PSI, Switzerland
    Title: Brilliant light from free electrons
    Abstract: Synchrotrons and free electron lasers are the brightest controlled sources of X-rays, and Switzerland is unique as a small country with an example of each in the form of the Swiss Light Source (SLS) and SwissFEL. To function, the two machines exploit combinations of optical and microwave technologies, while at the same time the photons which they produce can be used to advance the state of the art in the same technologies. New developments including imaging of magnetic microwave devices, exploitation of laser-electron interactions in SwissFEL and the diffraction-limited synchrotron SLS 2,0 about to be installed will be described.
    Biography: Gabriel Aeppli took his degrees from MIT and started his career in industry (NEC, AT&T and IBM) where he worked on problems ranging from liquid crystals to superconductivity and magnetism. A member of the US National Academy of Sciences and Fellow of the Royal Society (London), he was subsequently co-founder and director of the London Centre for Nanotechnology, cofounder of the Bio-Nano Consulting Company, and is founding head of the Photon Science Division of the Paul Scherrer Institute. His technical focus is on the implications and development of photon science and nanotechnology for information processing and health care.

    Speaker 6: Ewelina Obrzud, CSEM, Switzerland
    Title: Frequency rulers for astronomical spectroscopy
    Abstract: Searches for extrasolar planets, their characterisation, and measurements of fundamental constants’ variability are key applications of extreme-precision astronomical spectroscopy. The requirement of precise and accurate wavelength calibration poses a technological challenge due to the specificity of astronomical spectrographs, particularly their broad wavelength coverage and resolution. Laser frequency combs (LFCs) have already been recognised as a valuable tool in astronomy, yet generation of LFCs suitable for wavelength calibration still faces multiple challenges. This talk presents how exploiting new technologies and advancements in nonlinear optics can help circumvent the difficulties and provide LFCs relevant for spectrograph calibration in both the visible and near-infrared.
    Biography: Ewelina Obrzud obtained in 2019 an Interdisciplinary PhD thesis from University of Geneva in collaboration with CSEM in the field of nonlinear optics and laser frequency combs. Currently, she works as a R&D Engineer in CSEM. She was awarded the MERAC prize in 2022 for her work on the development of novel laser frequency combs for the accurate calibration and extreme radial velocity-precision of astronomical spectrographs.