Boffins have measured the shortest time period ever – but how many zeptoseconds would Usain Bolt need to set his record?

BOFFINS have measured the smallest period of time ever recorded.
To do it researchers at the Goethe University, in Germany, used the zeptosecond, a trillionth of billionth of a second.

They found that it takes 247 zeptoseconds for a photon – a type of particle – to cross a hydrogen molecule. Talk about the blink of an eye. The physicists measured the time interval using a technique involving X-rays and a super-powerful microscope.

While there are smaller units of time, for example the yoctosecond – a septillionth of a second – scientists have so far not been able to measure them. A zeptosecond – written as 0.000,000,000,000,000,000,001 – is far shorter than the previous shortest, a femtosecond. But what if we used them in everyday life?

Sarah Arnold reveals how many zeptoseconds it took Usain Bolt to set the 100m World Record, how long Boris Becker’s infamous restaurant “quickie” was and why Bryan Adams’ 1991 hit song Everything I Do seemed to be in the charts for ever . . .

  • Boris Becker’s five- minute Nobu “quickie” sex: 300,000,000,000 000,000,000,001 zeptoseconds.
  • Usain Bolt’s 100m World Record: 19,190,000,000,000,000, 000,001 zeptoseconds.

  • Southampton striker Shane Long scored the quickest goal in Premier League History at 7.69 seconds or 7,690,000, 000,000,000,000,001 zeptoseconds.
  • Hollywood actress Patty Duke’s shortest ever Oscar speech saying “Thank you” for Best Supporting Actress for 1962’s The Miracle Worker (1 second) 1,000,000,000, 000,000,000,001 zeptoseconds.
  • A cheetah runs 120kph or 3,600, 000,000,000,000,000,000,001 zeptoseconds.
  • The 1881 Wimbledon final in which William Renshaw defeated John Hartley, 6–0, 6–1, 6–1, was its shorest ever match at 36 minutes or 2,160,000,000,000,000,000, 000,001 zeptoseconds.

  • Queen’s Bohemian Rhapsody spent 14 weeks at No1 or 8,467,200,000,000, 000,000, 000,000,001 zeptoseconds.
  • Mariah Carey hit the longest high note at 20 seconds while singing Lead The Way – 20,000,000,000,000,000,000,001 zeptoseconds.
  • Kim Kardashian’s sex tape is 39 minutes or 2,340,000,000,000,000,000,000,001 zeptoseconds.
  • Arsene Wenger managed Arsenal for 22 years or 693,792,000,000,000,000,000, 000,000,001
  • Bryan Adams holds the longest consecutive reign for No1 with 1991 hit Everything I Do (16 weeks) or 9,676,800,000,000, 000,000,000, 000,001 zeptoseconds.
  • The time it takes for the human heart to beat 60 to 100 times takes on average 60,000,000,000 000,000,000,001 zeptoseconds.

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