In an incredible turn of events, the Earth decided to be dramatic and start spinning a lot faster in 2020.
When it came to 2020, even our own planet said: “we gotta wrap this shit up.” According to a spicy new report, the Earth rotated a lot quicker than usual last year, breaking records for the shortest measured day 28 times over.
According to reports, the average day has been gradually getting longer since records began in the ’60s. This wasn’t the case last year, however, with days being an estimated 0.5 milliseconds shorter than normal.
This isn’t the first time Mother Earth has chucked a hissy fit and decided to run at a different speed either. Scientists have discovered that a few million years ago, it took a whole 420 spins for the Earth to make its way around the sun.
While the planet currently takes 365 rotations to complete its round journey, its gradual deceleration means that a leap second has to be introduced every now and again to account for the difference. 2020 said “think again” and seriously put its foot on the gas, causing the Earth to spin the fastest that it has in the last 50 years.
I can’t wait for this thrill ride.
— Leo_Vinci (@dave_gonzo22) January 6, 2021
“It is certainly correct that the Earth is spinning faster now than at any time in the last 50 years,” National Physical Laboratory senior research scientist Peter Whibberley explained.
“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.”
There’s a whole heap of reasons as to why these changes in speed occur. Changing sea levels and the distance of the Moon from the Earth are huge potential factors.
It’s estimated that the days of 2021 will run 0.05 ms shorter than the usual.
Much to think about. pic.twitter.com/8Er6a0qANY
— Billy Ray Cyrus (@billyraycyrus) June 9, 2015