CESNET is involved in the European project to build a network for transmission of precise time and stable frequency

Prague December 2nd, 2020. Through its involvement in the CLONETS-DS project (Clock Optical Network Services – Design Study), CESNET will contribute to the setting up of a pan-European optical network for the distribution of precise time and frequency information. In the future, the new infrastructure will ensure, for example, better accuracy in navigation systems, improved measurements of the Earth’s gravitational field, and will be used in astronomy or in recording climate change. The exact time and stable frequencies will be distributed using an optical quantum clocks with transmission accuracy at eighteen place after the decimal point (it represents about 0.02 seconds in estimated lifetime of the Universe).

The European Union will invest approximately three million euros in the CLONETS-DS project over the next two years. A consortium of European national metrology institutes and highly specialized organizations from seven countries is working on the project. They develop pan-European optical network for the distribution of precise time and frequency that will meet the needs caused by technological development, such as cloud computing, the Internet of Things or Industry 4.0.

The precise time and frequency information transmission change consists in the way in which very stable frequency reference signals are distributed. There will be a transition from radio signal transmission to signal transmission over optical fibre networks.

“The CESNET association has more than twenty years of experience in operating an optical network based on dark fibres, as well as many years of experience in setting up and operating precise time and ultra-stable optical frequency transmissions in this optical network. Within the CLONETS-DS project, the association participates in key activities such as the definition of technologies, network topology as well as monitoring and evaluation of transmission parameters, “says Josef Vojtěch, Head of the Optical Networks Department of the CESNET Association.


The CESNET Association was founded by various Czech universities and the Czech Academy of Sciences in 1996. It is engaged in research and development in the field of information and communication technologies and builds and develops the CESNET national e-infrastructure for research and education. Thanks to its research activities and accomplishments, it represents the Czech Republic in important international projects, particularly in building the pan-European GÉANT data network and grid projects (EGI.eu), and actively participates in their implementation. The Association also works on the use of high-speed networks for sharing multimedia data both through synchronous video conferencing and shared applications as well as asynchronous streaming.

More information: www.cesnet.cz

Last change: 2.12.2020