Universal Time (UTC) and the Time Used in LabVIEW

Updated Oct 30, 2018

Reported In


  • LabVIEW

Issue Details

What is Universal Time and what is its relationship with the number of seconds elapsed in LabVIEW?


Coordinated Universal Time (UTC) is a time scale that couples Greenwich Mean Time, which is based solely on the Earth's inconsistent rotation rate, with highly accurate atomic time. When atomic time and Earth time approach a one second difference, a leap second is calculated into Universal Time. This allows for UTC to be accurate to approximately a nanosecond (billionth of a second) per day.

Universal Time was devised on January 1, 1972, and is coordinated in Paris by the International Bureau of Weights and Measures. The Universal Time, like Greenwich Mean Time, is set at 0 degrees longitude on the prime meridian, so it is independent of the time zone.

In LabVIEW, the number of seconds elapsed is related to 12:00 a.m., Friday, January 1, 1904, in Universal Time


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