Performance of a 229 Thorium solid-state nuclear clock

Author(s): G.A. Kazakov, A.N. Litvinov, V.I. Romanenko, L.P. Yatsenko, M. Schreitl, G. Winkler, Thorsten Schumm

Journal: New Journal of Physics

Volume: 14

Page(s): 083019

Year: 2012

DOI Number: doi:10.1088/1367-2630/14/8/083019

Link: Link to publication


The 7.8 eV nuclear isomer transition in 229 thorium has been suggested as a clock transition in a new type of optical frequency standard.

Here we discuss the construction of a ‘solid-state nuclear clock’ from thorium

nuclei implanted into single crystals transparent in the vacuum ultraviolet

range. We investigate crystal-induced line shifts and broadening effects for the specific system of calcium fluoride. At liquid nitrogen temperatures, the clock performance will be limited by decoherence due to magnetic coupling of the thorium nuclei to neighboring nuclear moments, ruling out the commonly used Rabi or Ramsey interrogation schemes. We propose clock stabilization based on a fluorescence spectroscopy method and present optimized operation parameters.

Taking advantage of the large number of quantum oscillators under continuous interrogation, a fractional instability level of 10−19 might be reached within the solid-state approach.

Schumm Group Schumm Group