The Deep Space Atomic Clock, or DSAC, was a technology demonstration of a small, ultra-precise, mercury-ion atomic clock launched into Earth orbit to test its potential as a next-generation tool for spacecraft navigation, radio science and global positioning systems. The technology, which is designed to improve navigation of spacecraft to distant destinations and enable collection of more data with better precision, is 50 times more accurate than today's best navigation clocks.
The project was launched in 2019 aboard a hosted payload built in partnership with NASA's Space Communications and Navigation Program and the Department of Defense. On Sept. 18, 2021, the mission came to a successful end.
Read more: Working Overtime: NASA’s Deep Space Atomic Clock Completes Mission