[time-nuts] WWV and legal issues

Scott McGrath scmcgrath at gmail.com
Thu Aug 30 08:01:23 EDT 2018



The ‘Flying Clocks’ served admirably to synchronize national standards laboratories.

But for a long time precision timing did not exist outside of national laboratories 

In the modern world availability of reliable precision timing is essential to operation of modern technologies all those Thunderbolt GPSDO’s we love here they all came from cell sites or telcom CO’s

Without precision timing there is no telephone network, cell phones or internet.   And that only became true in the last 20 years or so as long haul networks went from FDM on coaxial cable to TDM on fibre.

As to the effects on VLF and HF time distribution during a solar storm.   Yes they will be hosed for the duration while we see interesting atmospheric effects like the northern lights in Mexico.

But any damage can be repaired easily because the systems are ground based.   And once again time will be distributed after a short disruption in service which will likely be within oscillator holdover time.

Our space based systems once were fixable till a certain shrub decided to retire the repair truck which admittedly had its issues but was the ONLY vehicle which could capture a satellite and perform repairs.

Now the only fix is to launch new ones yet after a storm the old ones are a hazard because they are probably not responding to the ground control segment.



On Aug 29, 2018, at 8:30 PM, Bob kb8tq <kb8tq at n1k.org> wrote:

Hi

One of the basic disconnects here seems to be the idea that radio was the “best thing” before
GPS came along. In fact that’s not really how it worked. Time was traced / coordinated by hauling
atomic clocks on airplanes as the “best thing” before satellite systems came along….That was true 
for decades...

Bob

> On Aug 29, 2018, at 7:54 PM, Scott McGrath <scmcgrath at gmail.com> wrote:
> 
> A DIY radio distribution system is not secure and traceable to NIST/USNO even if the source is GPS.
> 
> 
> 
> On Aug 29, 2018, at 7:52 PM, Scott McGrath <scmcgrath at gmail.com> wrote:
> 
> Excellent point on LEGAL time,  The problem is as always is GPS is the new shiny object.
> 
> You mentioned earth based hostile actors.   But a really large solar flare or CME has the potential to take out or severely degrade ALL the GNSS systems.  
> 
> Something on the order of the ‘Carrington Event’ or the flare in 1989 which took out power to much of Canada.   
> 
> Things like this are why we need terrestrial time distribution systems like eLORAN which by its nature is resistant to both man made and natural interference.
> 
> On Aug 29, 2018, at 7:33 PM, Perry Sandeen via time-nuts <time-nuts at lists.febo.com> wrote:
> 
> Yo Dudes! 
> WWV and all its variations distribute what in the USA is the legal standard of time (from USNO) and frequency (NIST).
> If one is running a freq cal service IIRC it is a legal requirement to be able to have traceability to WWV.
> 
> If one was to rely on other sources, one has no guarantee that it 1. It is as accurate as claimed and 2. It can't be *diddled* with accidentally or deliberately.
> Although GPSDO's are very good and popular, they come from satellites that are vulnerable to damage from earth based resources.
> When your time and frequency standard(s) is under control on your own physical territory then they stand or fail on their own. 
> After the atom bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki, one of the major inventors of the bomb (I don't remember who) went to see US president Harry Truman and essentially told him that the scientists who developed the bomb should have a say of how or when it should be used.
> Truman is reported to have said for him to leave his office and told an aid that was responsible for his schedule to "never in hell let that (or any other) scientist  come to his office to influence American defense policy."
> Considering its status from both a scientific and political perspective, IMNSHO it will go on as before.
> To explain the political. No government official wants to see China or the Russian federation tell the world quote: See, the USA can't be trusted for something as important and simple as frequency and time.  However we are your friends who you can trust. Unquote.
> Regards,
> 
> 
> 
> 
> 
> This is a case of practical use of WWV albeit over 50 years a go the fundamentals are still valid today.
> At Karamursel Air station TUSLOG 234 I was assigned to the base receiver site.  Our base had to purposes.  to   
> 
> 
> 
> 
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