Wikipedia’s “Speed of Light” measurements over the years

Here you can see how this chart is currently presented on the Wikipedia website. They completely overlook Max Planck’s contribution. The editor of this page actually updated that Wikipedia page to include Max Planck’s data. Every page has at least one editor; and that Wikipedia editor rather quickly deleted the addition of Max Planck. One can only imagine that they couldn’t believe the information or our summary had been overlooked for so long..

In 1899 Max Planck defined Planck Time as the unit of time (in a system of natural units or “Planck units”) whereby light travels the distance of one (1) Planck length in a vacuum. Max Planck’s calculation was 300,000 meters/second. Using Planck Length given at 1.616255×10-35 meters and Planck Time 5.391247×10-44 seconds renders 299,792,422.79 meters/second. Now the search is on to find out when those values where rendered and by whom. -BEC

(Click on this image to go to it on Wikipedia’s website.)


And, read about the 1983 meeting, the 17th General Conference on Weights and Measures (CGPM). In Wikipedia they say, 

In 2011, the CGPM stated its intention to redefine all seven SI base units using what it calls “the explicit-constant formulation”, where each “unit is defined indirectly by specifying explicitly an exact value for a well-recognized fundamental constant”, as was done for the speed of light.”

They still have some work to do! In April 2012 we were advised by a NASA scientist, Joe Kolechi. He helped us with some of our initial calculations. In May 2012 in a letter to us, he acknowledged our attempt to redefine the base units. It was most gratifying to read his point #5, “… a possible redefinition of the standard meter might be made by choosing one of these possibilities (i.e., 2115 or 2116 times the Planck length) and used to replace the present-day standard. The present day standard is based on the wavelength of a particular atomic emission line. This new standard would be based on a purely theoretical concept.” On several occasions thereafter we sent notes in to the NIST and ISO standards people. Perhaps these notes helped. Probably we will never know. -BEC, December 2021