Article | September 16, 2013

Shock, Rattle, And Roll: Managing Vibration Effects In VHF Oscillators

Source: MtronPTI
M45 Gun

By Phil Smith, MtronPTI

All clocks depend on periodic motion — swinging, bending, twisting, or spinning. When you disturb that motion by acceleration (position change, gravity, vibration, or shock), the fundamental resonator device changes its beat. In many applications this is unnoticeable, but when extreme precision is required and acceleration levels are high, even the tiniest, most robust clocks need help.

This brief article describes crystal clock typical performance under acceleration and approaches to manage vibration effects. Methods are compared and shortcomings discussed. Intriguing results from a new resonator design are previewed, and a shock test facility is introduced.