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Chip-Scale Atomic Clock Package Tester


Symmetricom (now Microsemi) is the leading source of timekeeping and extremely precise synchronization technology for use by many industrial and government applications worldwide.  Their Chip Scale Atomic Clock technology enables atomic clock technology in portable applications by its extreme size, weight and power reductions. 


Replace an aging, unsupportable and completely custom 32-up specialty package functional tester with a four-up, low-cost general-purpose instrumentation platform, minimally customized to handle the device under test, a specialty package with embedded components.


A standard compactUTSTM (cUTS) functional tester employing an NI USB DMM and DAQ modules along with the Bloomy-designed USB switch and power control module provides four-up testing of the device-under-test (DUT).  The sole DUT-specific test hardware features are the cable harness, interface test adapter PCBA circuits and custom sockets for the DUTs.  A customer-supplied PC LabVIEW application created by Bloomy executes the tests and stores the results for off-line database population and analysis.

All of the switching, analog data acquisition and control capabilities of the compactUTS are employed in this application.  The versatility and configurability of the four cUTS switch matrices is especially important, allowing the NI USB DMM inside to accurately measure diode, resistor and isolation parameters with automated switching of the DMM to the various test points on each of the four test sockets. 

Calibration is an important characteristic for any test system, but the predecessor system had no provision for calibrating its measurement circuitry.  The cUTS solves this problem by employing standard instrumentation from National instruments that can be removed and sent to a calibration facility, or made accessible for a technician to perform the calibration in-house. 

Features and Benefits

  • COTS – the compactUTS standardizes functional test of simpler devices through a proven combination of commercial-off-the-shelf instrumentation and switching

  • Reuse – the compactUTS base can be easily repurposed to test other devices by simply creating a new DUT-specific cable and interface adapter.

  • Affordability – by keeping customization to a minimum, each cUTS solution is lower cost than DIY from scratch functional test system development.


By replacing an unmaintainable test system with a more capable, sustainable tester sized properly for operational production volume, the cUTS package tester contributes to efficient manufacturing of state-of-the-art chip scale atomic clocks.