Leap Second Stops Time on Saturday at Time Keepers' Request (VIDEO)

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By Brittney R. Villalva , Christian Post Reporter
June 29, 2012|11:50 am

For one monumental second, time will stop as the world's timekeepers let mother earth play a little catch up. Twenty-four hours a day, seven days a week.

  • Goldilocks
    (Photo: AP Photo / Zina Deretsky, National Science Foundation)
    This undated handout artist rendering provided by Lynette Cook, National Science Foundation, shows a new planet, right. Astronomers have found a planet that is in the Goldilocks zone — just right for life. Not too hot, not too cold. Not too far from its sun, not too close. And it is near Earth — relatively speaking, at 120 trillion miles. It also makes scientists think that these examples of habitable planets are far more common than they thought.

It all seems pretty redundant and at times it can feel like one day is just like the next. Not so. Apparently the earth can't always keep up with the rat race either, which is why on Saturday, time will be stopped for exactly one second- a leap second.

Every once in a while, time keepers add one second to the time of day in order to keep the sun at it's highest peak come noon. The last time a second was added was in June of 2009. On Saturday, June 30h, time will stop for the 25th time since leap seconds were invented.

"This leap second accounts for the fact that the Earth's rotation around its own axis, which determines the length of a day, slows down over time while the atomic clocks we use to measure time tick away at almost the same speed over millions of years," the scientific website Time and Date explained.

For those who have complained that there just aren't enough hours in the day, a leap second don't mean that one day in the very far future that there will be one more hour to the day (sorry to disappoint). Instead, leap seconds only affect those days to which the second has been added, meaning that not all days are alike after all.

Those timekeepers sound a little bit like a futuristic society, right? Those keepers are actually employees of the International Earth Rotation and Reference System Service (IERS), which "observes the Earth's rotation and compares it to atomic time," according to Time and Date.

Well just when it seemed like there were no jobs left in a down turned economy, looks like there might be a job for everything after all.

 

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