“œTime is fleeting“. That is certainly not a saying that applies in this case. At the University of Colorado at Boulder they’ve crafted an atomic clock that can keep precise time for billions of years, a world record.
Led by National Institute of Standards and Technology fellow Jun Ye, a team of scientists have created something that can last through the ages. This clock is not only accurate to the dime (as many other atomic clocks), but this one will last through the ages. It will still be completely accurate in 5 billion years from now.
Just to give you an idea of that timespan, the clock could still be 100% accurate when our sun is dying and turns into a red giant. So how does a machine like this have the capability to work for that long?
Well, strontium atoms are held in “traps” formed by lasers, and researchers are able to track how often they oscillate by using that laser light to get them moving. It‘s a technique that has been used for quite some time, but this clock has a much better accuracy rate. Therefore, it will remain accurate for much longer. According to the scientists behind it, they aren‘t done. They have plans to make one much more accurate within the next 5-10 years.
Source: The Verge