A spacecraft built by General Atomics‘ electromagnetic systems business has completed a NASA-sponsored in-orbit demonstration of miniature atomic clock technology.
The company said Tuesday its Orbital Test Bed satellite hosted the Deep Space Atomic Clock to test the payload’s ability to consistently track time for long-duration space exploration.
NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory produced DSAC and General Atomics Electromagnetic Systems supported the mission, which launched in June 2019, from the company’s facilities in Colorado.
The OTB orbited Earth 12,000 times during the mission, with a total distance of more than 525 million miles.
“The satellite has now transitioned to extended life operations in preparations to conduct a variety of experiments with the remaining payloads to determine and analyze spacecraft capability, calibrations, and proof of concept,” said Nick Bucci, vice president for missile defense and space systems at GA-EMS.