A second via atomic decay?

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  • Thread starter JeffCyr
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  • #1
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I recall hearing somewhere that the official length of a second was now kept by the measure of how much an atom of a certain material or isotope decays, such as "When X decays by Y it equals one second"

For the novel I'm writing I need a means to measure seconds that would be completely universal no matter where one would be in the universe, so recalling this I figured the decay of some element would be the best way to measure it.

Am I recalling it right that some element's decay is the official measurement of a second? Whether it is or not, is there such an element that could be used for it?
 

Answers and Replies

  • #3
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Thank you, although that's a bit of unknown for me. Does that mean that 1 second is the span of 9 192 631 770 change in energy levels of a cesium atom at 0 kelvin?
 
  • #4
DaveC426913
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Thank you, although that's a bit of unknown for me. Does that mean that 1 second is the span of 9 192 631 770 change in energy levels of a cesium atom at 0 kelvin?
Pretty much, yes.
 
  • #5
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Ah thank you!
 

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