Scientists want to cut time from the day because the Earth is spinning too fast

Well, the good news is that if 2021 is anything like 2020 it will fly by – because Earth's is spinning is faster than normal so our days are ever-so-slightly shorter than 24 hours long.

Scientists have noticed that the world is currently spinning at its quickest pace in 50 years.

The official timekeepers of our planet are now debating whether it makes sense to delete a second from time to account for the change, and bring the precise passing of time back into line with the rotation of the Earth.

The plans would mean adding a 'negative leap second' to account for the slightly shorter days – the first time ever this has happened.

It marks a stark contrast to previous years, with a total of 27 "leap seconds" having been added to our years since the 1970s, in order to keep atomic time in line with solar time.

This is because, for decades, the Earth has taken slightly longer than 24 hours to complete a rotation, but since last year it has been taking slightly less.

On 19 July 2020, the day was 1.4602 milliseconds shorter than the full 24 hours – the shortest day since records began.

Before last year, the shortest day occurred in 2005, but this record has been shattered an astonishing 28 times in the last 12 months.

Speaking to The Telegraph, Peter Whibberley, a senior research scientist from the National Physical Laboratory's time and frequency group, said: "It is certainly correct that the Earth is spinning faster now than at any time in the last 50 years.

"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 are also international discussions taking place about the future of leap seconds, and it's also possible that the need for a negative leap second might push the decision towards ending leap seconds for good."

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