Dr Carly Howett

Timekeeping on the moon

Exoplanets and planetary physics
Atmospheric, Oceanic and Planetary Physics

Dr Carly Howett, Associate Professor of Space Instrumentation, answers Oxford Sparks’ big question: what time is it on the moon?

‘If you kept one [clock] on the Earth and you sent one to the moon, the one on the moon would be at 1 second slower every 46 Earth years. So not a huge deal, right? You’re never going to notice that. If it’s just a let’s meet up for a coffee and you’re using your Earth clock, but you happen to be on the moon, that’s going to be absolutely fine. But if you’re trying to do really, really intricate, especially science or engineering, knowing time is fundamental, and that’s where it becomes really important.’

Click the link below to hear Dr Howett discussing the challenges of establishing a convention for measuring time on the moon with Oxford Sparks.