December 7, 2016
Earth’s days are getting longer but you’re not likely to notice any time soon — it would take about 3.3 million years to gain just one minute, according to a study published on Wednesday.
Over the past 27 centuries, the average day has lengthened at a rate of about +1.8 milliseconds (ms) per century, a British research team concluded in the journal Proceedings of the Royal Society A.
This was “significantly less”, they said, than the rate of 2.3 ms per century previously estimated — requiring a mere 2.6 million years to add one minute.
“It’s a very slow process,” study lead co-author Leslie Morrison, a retired astronomer with Royal Greenwich Observatory, told AFP.
“These estimates are approximate, because the geophysical forces operating on the Earth’s rotation will not necessarily be constant over such a long period of time,” he specified.
This article was posted: Wednesday, December 7, 2016 at 7:58 am