MadSci Network: Astronomy

Re: Doesn' t the earth rotate 366.256 times in a year but only have 365.256 day

Date: Fri Apr 26 14:23:34 2002
Posted By: Nicolle Zellner, Researcher, Studies of the Origin of Life/Astrobiology
Area of science: Astronomy
ID: 1017517336.As

You are correct for the most part. There are some fractions of a day that are unaccounted for, and so we make up for this lost time by including Leap Day in February, roughly every 4 years. More information about Leap Day (and Leap Year) and why we have it can be found at The Royal Observatory of Greenwich's Leap Year site and the Leapday/Leap Year site.

Information about minute calibrations involving the Leap Second can be found at the US Naval Observatory.

[Moderator: To be more complete, one must also specify the kind of year in which one is interested.]

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