How Modern Clocks Work

Timekeeping has been practiced since the dawn of civilization. We needed it to keep track of the seasons and to record important events. People employed many ways to do that such as sundials, observatories and ancient calendars. Today, we use wristwatches, wall clocks and electronic clocks on our gadgets to keep time.

When you buy watches in Singapore for your collection, you will notice that clocks are classified in different ways. Let’s look at the different clocks based on the mechanism used.

Mechanical Clocks
The mechanical clock has a pendulum or a balance wheel that is in constant motion to help move the the hands on the clock. It’s not the pendulum that is counting the hours for you, but its motion regulates the turning of the gears and these gears in turn display the number of minutes and hours that it counted according to the consistent movement of the pendulum.

Atomic Clocks
The atomic clock is considered the most accurate type of clock today. It measures the interval of the change of the caesium -133 atom. The oscillations in the atoms replace the movement of the pendulum in a mechanical clock. It was designed to precisely measure the length of a second. There are three types of atomic clocks including the caesium clock as well as the hydrogen and rubidium atomic clocks.

Electric Clocks
Some electric clocks use electricity as its primary source or the electricity is used as an oscillator. There are 7 types of electric clocks that have different mechanisms such as electric remontoire, electromechanical, synchronous, electromagnetic, quartz, tuning fork, and radio-controlled clocks. As long as the power supply is constant, the clock can keep an accurate time.

Radio Clocks
Radio clocks, sometimes called radio-controlled clocks, keep time by receiving information from a transmitter. It’s essentially a radio with a display. Radio clocks function with the help of an atomic clock from which the signal is transmitted. The radio clock automatically synchronizes with the information it receives. That doesn’t mean it will stop showing the time when it doesn’t receive a signal. It still has a base oscillator to keep track of time.

Crystal Clocks
The crystal clocks use a crystal oscillator instead of a pendulum. It utilizes the mechanical resonance of the crystal which in turn creates an electrical signal. By that definition, crystal clocks can be considered a type of electric clock. The electrical signal has a frequency which is the measurement used to tell the time. The crystals must be a type of piezoelectric material such as the quartz and polycrystalline ceramics. Quartz is the ideal choice, however, because its resonance is constant.

Interior Design

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