Got up early this morning to let the dog out. I looked at the clock on my little weather station and quickly realized it wasn’t as early as I thought; the clock was an hour off. I’m still not sure what happened, but I wondered if the government shutdown might have led to problems with the clock sync signal these device use.
I have to admit, I don’t really know much about how this works. A quick Google shows that it uses a radio signal called WWV. From Wiki:
WWV is a shortwave (also known as “high frequency” (HF)) radio station, located near Fort Collins, Colorado. It is best known for its continuous time signal broadcasts begun in 1945, and is also used to establish official U.S. government frequency standards, with transmitters operating on 2.5, 5, 10, 15, and 20 MHz. WWV is operated by U.S. National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST), under the oversight of its Time and Frequency Division, which is part of NIST’s Physical Measurement Laboratory based in Gaithersburg, Maryland.
WWV was first established in 1919 by the Bureau of Standards in Washington, D.C., and has been described as the oldest continuously-operating radio station in the United States. In 1931 it relocated to the first of three suburban Maryland sites, before moving to its current location near Fort Collins in 1966. WWV shares this site with longwave (also known as “low frequency” (LF)) station WWVB, which transmits carrier and time code (no voice) at 60 kHz.
Google also turns up recent stories about proposed budget cuts that could shut down WWV and a similar stationing Hawaii, WWVH. From the Voice of America (learning English page — hey, why not!):