NEW YORK DAILY NEWS – It’s not just your feeling, 2016 is literally longer than previous years.
According to a new Royal Society study, the Earth’s day has lengthened by 1.8 milliseconds per century since 720 B.C.
The researchers figured it out by comparing eclipse records from ancient Babylon, China and Greece to predictions of when and where those phenomena should have happened if the Earth’s rotation speed had remained constant.
Silver lining time: The Earth would be slowing down even more, but global warming has melted the polar ice caps, subtly changing the Earth’s shape at the poles and speeding up the rotation ever so slightly.
Scientists assure us that there is no reason to panic. Many factors can affect the speed of Earth’s rotation, including powerful winds, earthquakes and volcanic activity.
But we are slowing down, making 2016 likely to be the longest year ever.
Even longer in fact, because timekeepers are adding a “leap second” at 6:59:59 p.m. EST on Dec. 31. So look for the rare time 6:59:60 before the clock goes to its normal 7:00:00.