Space colonies and daylight saving time

Today the period of daylight saving time has come to an end in the European Union. On Wikipedia one can read about the supposed (but questionable) benefits of this practise, but here we can state that those reasons do not apply to free space settlements. Why? Simply, because the inhabitants of a space habitat are free to determine when the day start and end.

As anyone knows, the Sun shines always. Hence any space settlement which is sufficiently far away from the shadow of planets, will receive Sun light at any time. So for a space settlement regulating day-and-night is equivalent to opening respectively closing your curtains. And if you can determine when the Sun will “rise” or “set”, you don’t need to mess with the clock any more.

This amount of control creates certain benefits. Gerard O’Neill, one of the pioneers of space colonization, has proposed an ingenious plan. His idea was to sort space settlements in three time zones, each with a difference of 8 hours. This division in three time zones is related to Martin Luther’s concept of 8 hours of sleep, 8 hours of work, and 8 hours of leisure. Assuming an 8-hour work day, O’Neill’s plan would allow industry to continue permanently whilst no one should have to work night shifts. This is possible because industry would be located outside any space habitat.

We fully endorse the idea proposed by O’Neill. More specified we propose the following time zones: zone 1 at UTC-8, time zone 2 at UTC-0, and time zone 3 at UTC+8. Each time zone will contain around a third of the total population of space settlers.

2 thoughts on “Space colonies and daylight saving time”

  1. You never cease to amuse me with how much thought you put into the space settlements. I don’t understand the benefits of daylight saving if any. I will read the wikipedia article to see what I can learn from it.

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