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Research Focus Group Talk: Secret Clocks: The U.S. Military, Einstein’s Relativity, and the Global Positioning System

4080 HSSB UC Santa Barbara, Santa Barbara, CA

For nearly a decade, beginning in the mid-1970s, a debate unfolded among physicists and engineers over how best to include effects from Einstein's general theory of relativity in the new military technology now known as the Global Positioning System (GPS). Although some exchanges were published in the open scientific literature, much of the debate played out behind the scenes, in memos, reports, and special review sessions arranged by the U.S. military. Theoretical physicists who had ...