Los Angeles Times

Scientists take an atomic clock on the road and use it to measure the height of a mountain

Most of us think of time as a way to measure things like the length of our days and the span of our lives. But if you had access to a pair of extremely high-precision clocks, you could use time in a different way - to measure the height of mountains.

This week, scientists described a major step forward in using time to determine height above sea level. For the first time, they took an optical atomic clock out of the lab. Their liberated device was brought into the French Alps.

By comparing the tick rate of the portable atomic clock on

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