ROMA 1 - 1394/04
Why does the meter beat the second?
Paolo Agnoli and Giulio D'Agostini
ELECOM s.c.r.l, R&D Department,
Università "La Sapienza" and INFN, Rome, Italy
The French Academy units of time and length
-- the second and the meter --
are traditionally considered independent from each other.
However, it is a matter of fact that
a meter simple pendulum beats virtually the second
in each oscillation, a `surprising' coincidence
that has no physical reason.
We shortly review the
steps that led to the choice of the meter as
the ten millionth part of the quadrant of the meridian, and
rise the suspicion that, indeed, the length of the
seconds pendulum was in fact the starting point in establishing
the actual length of the meter.
Reference to this paper: physics/0412078
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