The CLONETS (Clock NETwork Service) project is a European scientific excellence project funded by the “Horizon 2020” research funds which are designed to promote emerging technologies and give Europe world-class research infrastructure accessible to the greatest number.

RENATER is one of the 16 CLONETS project partners, together with 2 other education and research networks (NREN), CESNET from the Czech Republic and PSNC from Poland.

In France, the research laboratories, Observatoire de Paris and Université Paris 13, together with RENATER and Muquans, the industrial, are going to carry out a joint thought process with their European counterparts. Over the last ten years, scientific and technological progress across Europe has contributed to spectacular advances in various fields of metrology (time and frequency transfer in particular), creating systems of which the performance is several orders of magnitude superior to GPS. So far, the various projects have been conducted on a national scale, each having acquired their own skills and techniques.

CLONETS’ ambition is to synthesise these skills and conduct an in-depth and joint European scale reflection involving all the players concerned (research laboratories, national education and research telecommunications networks, as well as industrial partners).

The challenge is to complete an in-depth study of the impact of a large-scale metrology network at the scientific, technical and economic levels by 2019, and to define its deployment and operation taking into account the specificities and demands of each player, to offer a wide range of time and frequency services based on very high performance clocks to the greatest number. The changes will have an impact on many areas (fundamental research, satellite positioning systems, geodesy, smart-grid, better climate change observations, etc.).