|MadSci Network: Physics|
The earth’s rotation is predicted to slow slightly as global warming becomes more significant – although the shift of mass only accounts for a small part. Model results suggest that global warming will increase wind speed in the atmosphere. Because angular momentum must be conserved, the earth will slow down as the atmosphere speeds up– increasing day length by roughly 1 microsecond/year. Like all predictions, this one has error associated with it – and so the actual change could be zero or as large as 4.4 microseconds/y. Overall, this is a very small change and fairly insignificant compared to many of the other probable impacts of global climate change. You can use your extra microsecond to figure out what to do about it :) de Viron O, et al. Effect of global warming on the length-of-day GEOPHYSICAL RESEARCH LETTERS 29 (7): Art. No. 1146 APR 1 2002
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