A career in industry is often the path less traveled. One reason is that it is hard to get information about what a career in industry is really like: What types of projects are done? What is day-to-day life like? What skills are needed? In this hour I will give you a flavor for a project that you might work on as an industrial physicist and will provide my viewpoints on a career in industry.
I will present a brief overview on progress towards developing Miniature Atomic clocks – primary frequency standards with substantial reduction in size, weight, and power over the state-of-the-art. Our clock is based on a microwave transition in Rubidium-87. Unique to this effort, our focus is on special design considerations and engineering trades to realize a primary frequency standard in an ultimate miniaturized form factor, and compatible with a high volume, robust manufacturing process. Key to size reduction is the use of laser-cooled atoms to achieve narrow linewidths in a small size, and the ability to perform all the clock functions: sample preparation, spectroscopy, and read-out, in one physical location with a single laser source. Applications, technology background, project progress and future goals will be discussed. I will also share my experiences as a physicist who has chosen a career in industry. Please bring your questions!