On Wed 2006-01-11T09:01:07 -0500, Daniel R. Tobias hath writ:
> If, however, this Martian second is actually defined as a particular
> multiple of the SI second, then the use of leap seconds on Mars would
> ultimately be necessary to account for any future changes in the
> length of the Martian day.

The martian second in their case is defined purely for the sake of the
local solar time of the solar powered rovers which are effectively
stationary on the planet.  Something akin to the long-used Newcomb
expression for mean solar time is more than sufficient.  In that
respect the rovers are sundials.

The mission clock on the lander has a more uniform time scale used for
the sake of such things as the cool photos of the martian moons
transiting the sun.

Leap seconds for Mars seem irrelevant until there are VLBI antennae on
Mars performing routine observations.  The atomic clocks used by such
VLBI antennae will not, however, keep synchronized with earth using
anything less than a fully general relativistic expression for the

Steve Allen                 <[EMAIL PROTECTED]>                WGS-84 (GPS)
UCO/Lick Observatory        Natural Sciences II, Room 165    Lat  +36.99858
University of California    Voice: +1 831 459 3046           Lng -122.06014
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