Re: predicting leap seconds

From: M. Warner Losh <imp_at_BSDIMP.COM>
Date: Sat, 07 Jan 2006 23:01:58 -0700 (MST)

In message: <20060107232614.GQ2021_at_feynman>
            Neal McBurnett <> writes:
: I still haven't seen any good data on predictions for periods of
: longer than 9 years.


thanks for the excellent summary of the current state of the art in

I think this shows that a 20 year time line is unrealistic at this
point, but 5-10 years would keep things fairly close, and 4 years
should be able to keep the current tolerances. It might be worth an
experiment where over the next 5 years IERS publish 12 new months of
data every 6 months. (eg Jan 2006 publish both the June 2006 and Dec
2006 correct, July 2006 publish the June 2007 and Dec 2007 correction,
Jan 2007 publish Jun 2008 and Dec 2008). We'd hit 4 years in advance
in Jan 2009. This would phase in the predictive timeline for leap
second insertions, and would also give the IERS control to end the
experiment if the time horizons exceeded their ability to predict with
confidence. This would be an evolutionary step, rather than a
revolutionary one. Of course this would make them even more
entrenched than they already are, because to kill them would require
waiting many years...

Received on Sat Jan 07 2006 - 22:04:56 PST

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