July 22, 2024

Why Scientists Debate Establishing Time Zones on the Moon | Sciences

3 min read
Why Scientists Debate Establishing Time Zones on the Moon |  Sciences
Why Scientists Debate Establishing Time Zones on the Moon |  Sciences

Clocks on the Moon run faster than on Earth – Image: Getty Images via BBC

What time is it on the moon? At this moment, no one is sure.

The time in Earth’s orbit is generally the same as in the corresponding region of the planet, but since different countries plan to travel and work on the Moon in the coming years, there is debate about whether it is a bad idea to have an official lunar time.

The European Space Agency (ESA) argued that combining a time zone for the moon would not only make it easier for different space agencies around the world to work together, but could also help obtain more accurate orientation and navigation on the surface. the moon .

  • What are the arcs of galaxies, giant structures that challenge what we know about the universe

Why is there no official time on the moon?

European space agents say a single space agency should be responsible for determining lunar time.

A decision must also be made as to whether we should follow a country’s time zone here on Earth or whether we should have a specific moon time.

Keeping time on the Moon can be difficult because clocks run a bit faster on the Moon – the 24-hour day on the lunar clock is 56 microseconds shorter than on Earth. It may seem like a small amount, but it’s a difference that adds up. This happens because the Moon has a weaker gravity than the Earth.

Short-term missions to the Moon usually use radio antennas to try to keep equipment in sync with time on Earth, but ESA experts say this method may not be suitable in the long term as humans start to maintain longer stays. .

Creating a time zone on the moon would mean the same could be done for future visits to other places in space, such as Mars, says Bernhard Hoffenbach of the European Space Agency.

He also said that it is necessary to think about the practical application of astronauts working on the moon. He also listed some challenges, such as regions of the moon where a day lasts roughly an Earth month and icy nights that last two weeks (due to the difference in the star’s rotation time).

The United States, India, Russia and Japan plan to send missions to the moon this year.

The first human visit to the moon in more than 50 years is scheduled for 2025 with NASA’s Artemis mission, which will take the first woman and the next man to the lunar surface.

What is the time zone?

Time around the globe is divided into time zones using imaginary lines called meridians. They go from the North Pole to the South Pole.

One of these imaginary lines runs through Greenwich in London, which marks Greenwich Mean Time, or GMT.

Countries to the east of the UK (such as Japan) are ahead of this base time, while countries to the west (such as Brazil) lag behind this base time.

Brazil has more than one time zone, but what is followed in most parts of the country is the Brasilia time zone, which is equivalent to 3 hours of GMT, i.e. -3 GMT.

This means that when it is 8 am in Brazil, it is 11 am in London (unless it is summer time in one of the countries).

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *