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National Timing Centre (NTC)

NPL National Timing Centre innovation nodes

Developing the first nationally distributed time infrastructure

The National Physical Laboratory (NPL) hosts three innovation nodes in partnership with the University of Strathclyde, University of Surrey, and Cranfield University. The nodes were developed in partnership between NPL and the host organisations and are focussed on the application of timing to the transport, telecommunications, fintech, and quantum sectors, amongst others.

NPL is the home of UK time and from here accurate timing, traceable to UTC(NPL), is supplied to key locations. The National Timing Centre (NTC) programme is paving the way for trusted and assured time and frequency across the UK, by developing the first nationally distributed time infrastructure, which will aid the acceleration of new technologies such as time-critical 5G and 6G applications, factories of the future and connected autonomous vehicles.

University of Strathclyde

Chronos Technology and the University of Strathclyde’s Physics Department are accessing 1PPS signals for their NTOL (NPL Time Over eLoran) project which is aiming to demonstrate the broadcast of the UK NPL managed national time-base across the UK by using the eLoran transmitter based at Anthorn in Cumbria.

University of Cranfield

Iquila Ltd and the University of Cranfield’s School of Aerospace Transport and Manufacturing (SATM) are accessing NTP for their DSQTA (Disseminated Secure QuanTime Autonomy) which is aiming to establish the evidence base for redistributing PNT data to air and ground autonomous systems in a smart city infrastructure environment and demonstrate the cyber-physical technologies required for safe, reliable, and secure autonomous transport. A conference paper has been published for the 2023 IEEE/AIAA 42nd Digital Avionics Systems Conference (DASC).

University of Surrey

Sygensys Ltd and the University of Surrey’s 5G/6G Innovation Centre are accessing 1PPS for their EGridSync (Resilient timing for electricity distributed energy resource management) project which is aiming to help Sygensys develop its innovative products and services which need a resilient timing reference to measure electricity grid performance.

NPL welcomes approaches from Industry and Academia for projects that could benefit from the traceable and high accuracy Timing Signals provided by the Innovation Nodes to develop novel solutions and products. Get in touch to find out more.

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