[Truncated] The continued pursuits in optical frequency synthesis and optical spectroscopy have been driven mainly by the possibility of producing ever more accurate and stable time and frequency standards. Over the last half century the inaccuracy of frequency standards has fallen from parts in 1010 to parts in 1015 , an order of magnitude improvement per decade. The pursuit of measuring time more accurately has led to incredible advances over the past few centuries and even more so in the last 100 years. The development of atomic clocks has vastly improved earth bound navigation systems, for example, through GPS and has produced more accurate satellite navigation. Improved frequency standards have aided telecommunications by providing time references for telecommunication hubs a.round the world. The enhanced stability of oscillators and accuracy of frequency standards also allows for deeper investigations in fundamental physics. Clocks with unprecedented levels of stability will soon be used to test gravitational theories with extraordinary precision. And a search may be made for relative frequency drifts between frequency standards based on different atomic species to indicate possible drifts in fundamental constants, such as the fine structure constant.
|Qualification||Doctor of Philosophy|
|Publication status||Unpublished - 2002|