[LEAPSECS] the abbreviation UTC

Steve Allen sla at ucolick.org
Sun Aug 14 20:38:45 EDT 2011

The wikipedia page on UTC makes a point of describing the origin of
the term "UTC" and cites some recent references which have not seemed
to be in agreement with older documents. I have recently acquired
some early CCIR texts.

I believe that the story of the term "UTC" is told in the 1978
proceedings surrounding CCIR Rec. 536. I now have a synopsis of
the CCIR proceedings for that and other years at

The bottom line is that CCIR 536 did recommend "UTC" for use
independent of language, but they did so in consideration of and
citing the usage of that term by the CGPM.

This bit of history is strangely commensurate with Terry Quinn's
suggestion in the most recent issue of Metrologia that the ITU-R
should relinquish authority of UTC to the CGPM.

Steve Allen <sla at ucolick.org> WGS-84 (GPS)
UCO/Lick Observatory--ISB Natural Sciences II, Room 165 Lat +36.99855
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Santa Cruz, CA 95064 http://www.ucolick.org/~sla/ Hgt +250 m

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