Time.is

The leap second stays another 8 years

2015-11-20

The decision of whether to abolish leap seconds from civil time, has been deferred until 2023. The announcement comes from the ITU World Radiocommunication Conference in Geneva, citing that "further studies are required on the impact and application of a future reference time-scale".

Leap seconds are inserted or removed when necessary to keep UTC within one second of mean solar time (UT1). Irregularities in the rotation of the Earth cause mean solar time to deviate from UTC. Without leap seconds, UTC time would slowly drift apart from mean solar time.

From a computer scientist's point of view it is desirable to keep the number of seconds in a day constant. Leap seconds inserted at irregular intervals need special handling and is a potential source of errors.

The last leap second occured on 30 June 2015.

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