Time might be the only thing that has been consistent since the beginning of, well time itself. Though the system of tracking time has been different and evolved over the years, that never stopped it from being steady. Time affects everything we do and the thing about time is, no matter how much we try we cannot change it. Below are some fun facts about time that you might’ve never known before.
1. Einstein and Time are related. You might wonder how. Well according to his theory of relativity, the closer one is to the Earth, the slower the time goes. That means if you’re on the highest point of the earth i.e. Mount Everest, a year would go by 15 microseconds faster than it would if you were at sea level.
Another Einstein related time theory states that “the distinction between past and present and future is only an illusion, however persistent” because the time and space are affected by speed and gravity making them fluid.
2. You might think that you age with time but try traveling at an extremely high speed. Because the laws of physics suggest that you actually age slowly if you travel extremely fast. So if you were to travel to the star Sirius from the Earth at 99% of the speed of light, you’d actually have aged less than three years on arrival, but the people on earth would have been more than 17 years.
You might also think that you’re living in the present but think again. everything we see is actually in the past. Since the light takes 8 minutes and 20 seconds to reach to the earth, even the sun we see out the window was here the whole time but we could only see it after the light hits us, 8 minutes later.
3. Whatever we were taught in schools about how a day is 24 hours long is absolutely wrong. The earth actually takes 23 hours, 56 minutes, and 4.2 seconds to complete one rotation. But it takes 24 hours to witness two sunrises as the day gets longer because the Earth moves further in its orbit around the sun each day.
4. So you’re on a vacation and you’re having so much fun but you can’t believe that a week went by as if it were a weekend. You might think the time flew so fast because you were having so much fun and this happens all the time. But you are actually wrong, according to a psychological study, the time actually seems like slowing down when one is having fun. This may be because you’re so much into having fun you don’t even have a track of time.
And do you ever get that feeling when you wish the time would just freeze? Well, that might be a possibility someday as one physicist suggests that the reason behind the distant galaxies moving faster than the nearby ones is that the time was faster in the past but as the universe expands it accelerates. And if this theory is correct, the time might be frozen in a few billion years.
5. There is a clock named Strontium atomic clock, which is considered to be the most accurate clock ever built. It is accurate to the point within a second over 15 billion years.
But before the inventions of atomic clocks, a second was measured as 9,192,631,770 oscillations of a caesium.
6. We all know that our Earth is very old and ever since it has been able to sustain life, many creatures have come and go. But there are few animals that have been around for so long. The Bowhead Whale a.k.a. The Arctic Whale is one of those rare mammals that have lived for more than 200 years. The oldest known bowhead is 211 years old.
7. Almost everyone knows or at least heard about the Big Bang Theory. The formation of the Universe began with the Big Bang. While scientists and many people believe this theory, there are some who tend not to believe it. But according to the ones that do, it happened approximately 15 billion years ago. Though they have knowledge about when it all began, nobody knows when it’s going to end.
8. While we sit and survive on the planet we call home, worrying about the passing time and getting old, we tend to overlook the fact that the Earth is about 4.5 billion years old. Have you ever thought about that? And have you ever wondered when the Earth might have been created? According to the 17th-century Archbishop of Armagh James Usher, by adding up the family histories mentioned in the Bible, he came to the conclusion that the Earth was created on October 22, 4004 BC, on a Saturday night.
However, the Earth is still a bit younger than the mighty sun which is about 5 billion years old.
9. The first calendar that was ever created was by King Romulus, the first king of Rome around 753 BCE. The calendar only had 10 months and it began in March. It was created based on the rotation of the Moon. But the problem with the calendar was that the entire year was just 304 days long and winter was not assigned to any month.
10. Then came the Julian Calendar era which was created by Julius Caesar. He based the calendar on the Earth’s rotation around the sun and also added two months: July and August named after himself and his Successor Augustus respectively.
According to Julian Calendar, there were 365 days, 12 months, and an extra day once every four years, known as the leap year. This extra day was added to February as it was the last month of the year and fell on Feb. 24.
11. Everyone, every once in a while have wondered how many babies are born every minute or how many people lose their lives every minute. According to the Population Reference Bureau, in 2011, there were estimated 250 babies born every minute all around the world, making 4 births per second.
Similarly, for every 4 births per second, 2 people die, making it 105 people per hour.
12. On an average, our heart beats more than 100,000 times per day and in every 60 seconds, pumps 377 liters of blood around our body.
Similarly, a hummingbird’s heart beats 1,260 beats per minute. But when they experience a hibernation-like state, their heartbeat can slowdown up to 50-180 beats per minute.
13. We’ve heard about people giving other people their valuable time but have you ever heard about selling time? Well, this happened around the mid-1800s when a businessman named John Belville began selling time. He would set his pocket watch every morning where he worked and sell precise time to all his clients in the city. The business continued even after his death, by his widow until 1940.
14. As we all know that the speed of light is faster than the speed of sound. This is the reason why we see the lightning flashes before we hear the thunder. And this can actually help us figure out how far the lightning actually stroke. For example, if the lightning strike is 0.6 miles away, there will be a delay of three seconds.
The lightning hits the earth at a rate of 100 strikes per second, that means 6,000 strikes per minute.
15. In a year, there are 31,556,926 seconds. But every once in a while, due to the slowing of the rotation of the Earth, the 24-hour day gets slightly off making the day longer. In order to keep things regular, the International Earth Rotation Service (the body responsible for regulating astronomical time) periodically adds a second to the clock. This extra second is known and a leap second and recently occurred on Dec. 31, 2016.