Dismiss Notice
Join Physics Forums Today!
The friendliest, high quality science and math community on the planet! Everyone who loves science is here!

We're Slipping!

  1. Oct 19, 2007 #1
    Is it conceivably possible that our orbit around the Sun is changing? Through
    unforeseen gravitational forces, Increases and decreases of mass, or the makeup of space itself, can the current way we measure time gradually get to the point where it's completely wrong?
  2. jcsd
  3. Oct 20, 2007 #2


    User Avatar
    Science Advisor
    Homework Helper

    Our orbit around the sun is constantly changing through mass loss from the sun and the gravitationaly effects of every other body in the solar system.
    The length of the day also changes gradually due to the rotation slowing down and randomly due to earthquakes etc.

    Time is now measured by atomic clocks and extra 'leap' seconds have to be inserted to get back in step with the sun. There is a proposal to stop doing this and stick to atomic time letting our clocks slowly drift away from the time set by the sun.
  4. Oct 20, 2007 #3


    User Avatar
    Science Advisor
    Gold Member

    The earth is sliding closer to the sun over time - nearly a millimeter per century. This is an issue that has been largely ignored.
Share this great discussion with others via Reddit, Google+, Twitter, or Facebook