The speed of rotation of the Earth has changed and increased. The change in the rotation will cause the time to pass quicker than ever in the past 50 years.
According to the official data, the time is passing faster than usual. The increase in the Earth’s rotational speed decreases the duration of a day by less than 24 hours.
As reported by Daily Mail, the duration of the 24 hour day on Earth has decreased by “half a millisecond.” The data indicates that since the rotation has become faster, the day will end ½ second sooner. However, whether the scientist would delete a second or not is yet certain. The deletion of the second from time is known as “negative leap second.”
“Time leap” is the adjustment of one second to attend the distinct difference between the solar time (UT1) and the atomic clocks that are applied to Coordinate Universal Time(UTC). In many countries, UTC is used as a reference for civil time. In the 1970s, 27 leap seconds were added to keep the atomic time synchronized with the solar time. Hence for decades, Earth has a slightly longer rotational duration than 24 hours, which has been reducing continuously in the last year.
On 1 January 1988, International Rotation and Reference Systems Service applied the leap second in order to maintain the difference between solar time and UTC around 0.6 seconds to 0.9 seconds. For the past five decades, to complete one rotation, the planet has taken around 86,400 seconds, which is slightly less than 24 hours. However, in mid-2020, the days on Earth started to become even shorter than 86,400 seconds. According to the records that are shared by the scientist, last July, the planet took 1.4602 milliseconds less to complete a rotation, and the day is recorded as the shortest day. Before July 2020, researchers recorded the shortest day in 2005. However, the record has been broken around 28 times in the past year.
Our days are crawling with a 0.5-second delay to complete 24 hours. The satellites are aligned with solar time, and if our time is not synchronized with the UT1, then the researchers and scientists won’t get accurate readings of the position of the moon, stars, and sun.
The Earth’s rotation has been slowing down and never accelerating; hence there was no need to apply a negative leap second before. Now the timekeepers are debating whether there is a need to correct the growing difference or not.
However, there is no solid news regarding the implication of the “leap second.” The idea of a negative leap second is being pushed for now. Still, it will be needed if Earth’s rotation increases any further.