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Physicists in the UK are developing an accelerometer for the Royal Navy, based on the quantum interference of ultracold atoms. The device will allow submarines to pinpoint their position underwater to within 1 m after travelling one day, without having to surface to use GPS. This is much better than is possible with current accelerometers, which are accurate to within 1 km after a day's travel. With further development, the device could be used for oil exploration or even to do "gravity scans" of concealed objects.

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