Earth Experiences Its Shortest Day Ever in Recorded History
1.59 milliseconds less than our usual 24-hour day.
Earth experienced its shortest day in recorded history on June 29, shaving off 1.59 milliseconds from the usual 24-hour cycle.
This kind of phenomenon has been happening more frequently as of late. In 2020, Earth had its 28 shortest days since “accurate daily measurements using atomic clocks began in the 1960s,” according to Time and Date. Since 2020, Earth has continued to experience a shorter day with June 29, 2022 taking the number one spot.
The shorter Earth day can be caused by the planet’s oceans, tides, climate, or processes in Earth’s inner or outer layers. However, scientists aren’t exactly sure, although it doesn’t compare to the 19-hour-days experienced 1.4 billion years ago.
The speeding of the planet’s rotation, which could lead to a “negative leap second” could be linked to “unpredictable and devastating outages,” according to Oleg Obleukhov, a production engineer, and Ahmad Byagowi, a research scientist. Scientists are looking for ways on finding a solution for implementing atomic time as adding a leap second, a practice first introduced in 1972 by the Telecommunication Union to offset Earth’s rotation delay, could severely impact IT systems.
They added, “The impact of a negative leap second has never been tested on a large scale; it could have a devastating effect on the software relying on timers or schedulers.”