Scientist Say The Earth Spun Slightly Faster In 2020
Nothing ever stays exactly the same. The Moon used to be closer. The Earth used to spin faster. Due to a slight wobble summer and winter will happen at opposite times of the year ever few thousand years. There have been times when the planet has been completely frozen over, but most of the time Earth is so warm it does not even have polar ice caps. Our climate is forever changing.
Over time we even see the Earth's rotation has been slowing. Scientists have observed, and come to expect this.
But, for some reason, in 2020 we saw a brief increase in speed, before returning to the previous rotation.
This sudden jump in rotation speed changed our clock by a single second. Usually, we add a second to our year to make up for our spin, but this time scientist took a second away.
There is no reason for alarm! Much like climate change, what happened was natural. However, why it happened is still being discussed.
The planet's rotation constantly varies. These changes are caused by natural changes in atmospheric pressure, winds, ocean currents and the movement of the core. But the international timekeepers of the atomic clocks were forced to tinker with time to get us back on track. If astronomical time, the clock set by the time it takes the Earth to make a full rotation around the sun, deviates from UTC by more than 0.4 seconds, UTC is adjusted. (LiveScience.com)
"It's quite possible that a negative leap second will be needed if the Earth's rotation rate increases further, but it's too early to say if this is likely to happen," physicist Peter Whibberley of the National Physics Laboratory in the U.K., told The Telegraph.
One theory as to what caused the temporary speed was that something shifted down near the Earth's core, causing everything to speed up as this weight changed position. But no one knows for sure.
You probably didn't feel the planet speed up, did you? Don't worry. No one did.