Building a resilient timing infrastructure for Ireland

Time and timing distribution has become increasingly important for Critical Infrastructure sectors such as communications, energy, transportation, emergency services, financial services, and data centers. We aim to provide resiliency for time and timing distribution within Ireland and beyond.


National Timing Grid of Ireland

National Timing Grid of Ireland is an initiative to interlink independent atomic clocks within Ireland to create a more robust timing infrastructure. The main objectives of the initiative are:

  • Near real time tracking of clock stability against other atomic clocks to provide early warnings in case of performance degradation.
  • Direct traceability to UTC through UTC(NSAI).
  • Improved holdover in case of GNSS degradation through a common timescale observation and steering.

Main partners

National Standards Authority of Ireland, National Metrology Laboratory (NSAI NML)
Timing Solutions Ltd
Data Edge Ltd

Number of currently active clocks


Caesium clocks


Rubidium clocks


PTP clocks


GNSS clocks


Improving reliability of timing distribution

Histogram of baseline performance: x-axis is time error in nanoseconds.

Real time tracking of clock stability

Real time tracking of clock stability is important to maintain synchronization accuracy required by the downstream devices and applications. Ability to get an early warning in case of performance degradation is essential to maintain Service Level Agreements.

Direct traceability to UTC through UTC(NSAI)

We provide a direct traceability link to UTC through comparison against UTC(NSAI) – UTC realization through National Standards Authority of Ireland.


Enabling resilient timing infrastructure


Clock comparison using Real-Time Common View Time Transfer

Common View Time Transfer (CVTT) is a well established method to compare two physically distant clock with accuracies below 10 ns. This is normally achieved through a very expensive metrology grade GNSS receivers. We are able to do that with mass market COTS receivers.


Time traceability to UTC through UTC(NSAI)

NSAI NML is cooperating with International Bureau of Weights and Measures (BIPM) to provide time & frequency signals traceable to International Atomic Timescale (TAI) and Coordinated Universal Time (UTC) through NSAI NML’s physical realization of UTC – UTC(NSAI).


PTP GM/client link stability evaluation

CVTT can be used as an inexpensive, yet accurate method to evaluate stability and accuracy of a PTP link. All that is required is GNSS antenna at each PTP site.


NTG measurement node

The NTG node provides key measurements for Common View Time Transfer and can also provide monitoring of a GNSS installation to understand antenna environment, and signal reception quality, for example. The practical use case study for one NTG node is available here.


Meet the Team

Dr. Zdenek Chaloupka

Timing Solutions – Director

Dr. Zdenek Chaloupka is a director of a start-up company Timing Solutions Ltd. Before starting his own company, Zdenek has spent more than 12 years in PNT industry and academia in companies such as u-blox AG as the Head of Timing Product Team, European Space Agency as a Research Fellow and EBTIC/BT as a Senior Researcher. He has a number of awarded patents to his name and publishes regularly in peer reviewed journals. His main interest and passion is time and timing synchronization and related devices and algorithms.

Dr. David Fleming

NSAI NML – Technical Manager, Time, Frequency & Acoustics Laboratories.

Dr. David Fleming manages the Time, Frequency and Acoustics Laboratory in the National Standards Authority of Ireland’ National Metrology Laboratory (NSAI NML). David has worked in the field of Metrology and Calibration in the NSAI NML for 15 years and has extensive experience in calibration, research, collaboration, mentoring, and project management.

Aisling O’Rourke

NSAI NML – Graduate Intern

Aisling O’Rourke is a graduate intern at the National Standards Authority of Ireland’ National Metrology Laboratory (NSAI NML), working in the Time and Frequency Section. She recently graduated from Technological University Dublin with a First Class Honours in Physics. Aisling serves as one of the main liaisons representing NSAI NML in the NTG project.

Paul Phelan

Data Edge – Engineer and Company Director

Paul Phelan is an Electronics engineering graduate of Kevin St. DIT/Trinity. In 1994 he joined Data Edge as a design engineer. He has been involved in timing & synchronisation in Ireland since the late 1990’s and was fundamental in Data Edge’s representing the industries foremost synchronisation equipment manufacturers, such as Calnex, Microchip/Microsemi/Symmetricom, and Spirent.


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