Leap Second?

Okay leap year fanatics. We have a leap second on our hands. A much shorter time frame to mull over and wonder, well, why? Joe Rao of Space.com explains,

From their careful observations of the positions of the stars, astronomers have deduced that the Earth’s is ever so slightly slowing down at a non-uniform rate, probably attributable to its sloshing molten core, the rolling of the oceans, the melting of polar ice and the effects of solar and lunar gravity.

Photo courtesy of Yahoo.com

To catch up, the Atomic Clock is going to stand still for one second, giving us an extended minute.

Today’s atomic clocks are accurate to approximately one second in 200 million years. Earth has been falling behind atomic time at about two milliseconds per day, thereby missing the “official” clock by about six-tenths of a second. Since this clock is out of sync with the Earth, a leap second has to be added to make up the difference.

 To see the leap, observe what your clock displays just before 8 p.m. EDT on June 30. The minute beginning at 7:59 p.m. EDT will contain 61 seconds. Cool! Saturday will be the 25th time a leap second has been needed since it was initiated in 1972. The last time we needed an additional second was in 2008.
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