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"Time Balls, Telegraphy, Radio Signals, and Public Clocks: Astronomy and the Distribution of Synchronized High-Precision Time in Sweden, 1850–1920"

Conference contribution
Authors Gustav Holmberg
Published in Biennial History of Astronomy Workshop - ND XIII July 5-9, 2017 - abstracts
Publication year 2017
Published at Department of Literature, History of Ideas, and Religion
Language en
Subject categories History of science, Technology and culture, History of Ideas


This paper studies the production and distribution of accurate time in Sweden, a field where astronomy had substantial practical applications. Time-related astronomical expertise, instruments, and techniques aligned with commercial interests, navigation, and, more generally, the overall synchronization of daily life in the modern city. Precise time had both a practical and cultural value in the late nineteenth century; it was produced at central standard institutions such as astronomical observatories and state-run navigational schools, and was distributed through a network of telegraph wires, publically visible clocks, and time balls.

Page Manager: Webmaster|Last update: 9/11/2012

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