TWSTFT - Two-Way Satellite Time and Frequency Transfer

TWSTFT is a technique that utilizes commercial geostationary satellites for time and frequency transfer. The technique is active in contrast to GPS, that is, time signals are transferred between laboratories via satellite transponders.

The International Bureau of Weights and Measures (BIPM) outside Paris make use of the technique in cooperation with national laboratories to compare atomic clocks as well as for the calculation of the international atomic time scales TAI and UTC. TWSTFT is in this consideration a more accurate complement to the more common time transfer methods utilizing GPS.

About 15-20 time laboratories use the TWSTFT method presently, and RISE is one of them. In late autumn 2001 it was decided that RISE should receive funds from The national Post and Telecom Agency for the investment of a TWSTFT-system. The design of a TWSTFT-system to be installed at RISE began during 2002 with financial support from the Foundation for Knowledge and Competence Development and a complete station was installed late 2003.

Presently, the satellite Telstar 11N is used for time links between Europe and North America. RISE transmits to dozens stations in Europe and two in North America. A more detailed information about TWSTFT can be find for example at The National Physical Laboratory (NPL) in England. 

National and International time keeping

The Swedish national time scale UTC(SP) is a national realisation of the Coordinated Universal Time UTC.Read more...

Related Information


Metrological research

Business Areas

RISE Safety and Transport

See also

Post and Telecom AgencyDokumentet öppnas i ett nytt fönsterKnowledge FoundationDokumentet öppnas i ett nytt fönster

Contact Persons

Kenneth Jaldehag

Phone: +46 10 516 54 08

Carsten Rieck

Phone: +46 10 516 54 40

RISE Research Institutes of Sweden, Phone 010-516 50 00, E-mail

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