How Europe lost and again found six minutes on her watch

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<pre>How Europe lost and again found six minutes on her watch

The European network of energy operators dealt with the problem, because of which the clock in household appliances accumulated on the continent as much as 6 minutes behind in comparison with real time. The fault was the squabbling between Serbia and Kosovo due to electricity supplies – the insurgent region needed 113 GWh, which he did not receive on time. And because of this, problems with time began throughout Europe.

The reason is simple – the clock in the microwave reads the time, focusing on the average frequency of the alternating current in the network at 50 Hz, because it's simple and convenient. But between mid-January and March, due to the disputes between Serbia and Kosovo, there was a deficit of the required 113 GWh, which was automatically covered by a small drop in electricity supplies throughout the European network. And this led to a reduction in the frequency of the current to 49.996 Hz. Trifle, but it affected the algorithm for calculating time, and for the past period the clock accumulated a backlog in as much as 6 minutes.

Not only were the timers on microwave, but also on many other household appliances, and in the homes of people far from the Balkan internecine strife. Therefore, European officials pressed the culprits and demanded from them to level out the levels of energy supply and consumption, which was done by March 8.

And in order to compensate for the backlog in time on the microwave clock, the same officials ordered for a whole month to increase the frequency of the current to 50.01 Hz. Last week, it was announced that the lost 6 minutes had been restored, but that's the trouble – for many Europeans, all that was happening was a surprise due to poor coverage in the press. And so it's better to check your watch on all the appliances in the house so as not to be in a situation where the refrigerator is in a hurry and the washing machine is still living in the past.

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