26 December 2005

A butterfly

A leap second will be inserted in the world's clocks this year, just before midnight at GMT on New Year's Eve.


Anonymous said...

Fascinating and scary! If I recall correctly, the recent tsunami was what managed to slow down the rotation of the earth.

anna tambour said...

You went DING to my memory, Vera, so I looked it up, and indeed, the tsumani did change the earth's rotation. As Nature reported, "it has accelerated the Earth's rotation, geophysicists have declared. They estimate that the shockwave shortened the period of our planet's rotation by some three microseconds."

See: "Sumatran quake sped up earth's rotation" - Nature

This controversial adjustment has a different reason: capricious heavens (good on 'em!). "The trouble is that the heavens behave more capriciously than cesium."

See The Washington Post's article,"Added Ticktock of the Clock Restarts Time Debate".

I wish I knew the code for linking here, but I don't, so I can't give you the URLs as they don't fit. Sorry.