The 118-year-old cylinder that is the international prototype for the metric mass, kept tightly under lock and key outside Paris, is mysteriously losing weight – if ever so slightly. Physicist Richard Davis of the International Bureau of Weights and Measures in Sevres, southwest of Paris, says the reference kilo appears to have lost 50 micrograms compared with the average of dozens of copies.
“The mystery is that they were all made of the same material, and many were made at the same time and kept under the same conditions, and yet the masses among them are slowly drifting apart,” he said. “We don’t really have a good hypothesis for it.”
Hat tip to Karen L. Myers.
Dominique R. Poirier
It’s a matter of trend.
Many things did lose weight in France during the last century, you know.
Not that surprised.
Two words. Global Warming
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