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White House Commissions NASA to create a particular time zone for the moon with faster seconds

The White House, located in the capital of The United States, has just assigned a new task to NASA. In a letter issued on Tuesday, the White House asked the US space agency to establish a unique and unified standard time zone for the moon. And not just the moon, citing other celestial bodies, the letter reads there should be a standard time for all.

The White House has also outlined the benefits of the proposed standard time for the moon, informally known as Coordinated Lunar Time (LTC). As mentioned in the letter, this standard time is expected to enhance the precision of all space missions. The letter also sets a deadline of the end of 2026 for establishing this standard time zone for the moon.

Arati Prabhakar, the head of the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy, has played a pivotal role in advocating for establishing the Lunar Time Zone. In the letter, she emphasizes that this establishment is not just a technicality but a fundamental step towards scientific discovery, economic development, and international collaboration.

She also added that standardizing the time for the moon will make space operations safer, which will have important implications for space missions.

As the moon has less gravity than the Earth, time moves 58.7 microseconds faster on the natural satellites.

The letter continues, “Due to general and special relativity, the length of a second defined on Earth will appear distorted to an observer under different gravitational conditions or to an observer moving at a high relative velocity.”

She added, “Exploration of Cislunar space opens a new sphere of human activity and offers opportunities to advance scientific understanding, exploration, and economic growth.”

“We are grateful to those across the community who have contributed to date and continue to share their valuable knowledge to shape our collective understanding of this topic as we move forward,” Prabhakar added.



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