Evolution of Time Measurement in Astronomy

  • E. Biémont
Part of the Astrophysics and Space Science Library book series (ASSL, volume 285)


Astronomical phenomena, such as the waxing and waning of the Moon, the succession of days and nights and the pattern of the seasons define a time which is basically cyclical. During many centuries, rather simple devices, such as water clocks or astrolabs and, later on, mechanical clocks, have been used by astronomers for defining realistic but low accuracy time scales. Lately, the atomic time, with its unprecedented precision, has open the way to a more accurate investigation of astronomical phenomena. From cyclical, the time of mankind has become definitely linear and the astronomers seem to have lost its control ...


Global Position System GLObal NAvigation Satellite System Earth Rotation Universal Time Atomic Clock 
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Copyright information

© Kluwer Academic Publishers 2003

Authors and Affiliations

  • E. Biémont
    • 1
    • 2
  1. 1.IPNAS, Université de Liège Sart TilmanLiègeBelgium
  2. 2.Astrophysique et Spectroscopie Université de Mons-HainautMonsBelgium

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