Trapped Ions, Laser Cooling, and Better Clocks

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Science  26 Oct 1984:
Vol. 226, Issue 4673, pp. 395-400
DOI: 10.1126/science.226.4673.395


Ions that are stored in electromagnetic "traps" provid the basis for extremely high resolution spectroscopy. By using lasers, the kinetic energy of the ions can be cooled to millikelvin temperatures, thereby suppressing Doppler frequency shifts. Potential accuracies of frequency standards and clocks based on such experiments are anticipated to be better than one part in 1015.