Time of Finland: ​NTP - network time service

Photo or trains arriving at Helsinki railway station.

​The time of Finland is kept at VTT, at the Centre for Metrology MIKES. Coordinated Universal Time (UTC) synchronises the world and provides the unit of time, the SI-second. MIKES, the National Metrology Institute (NMI) of Finland, maintains the Finnish realisation of Coordinated Universal Time, UTC(MIKE), with the help of six atomic clocks.

Precise timekeeping is essential to today’s society and it is of utmost importance that it can be measured as reliably as possible. That is why, in addition to the realisation and dissemination of the national time scale, MIKES performs scientific research in time and frequency metrology. For instance, MIKES is developing an optical single-ion atomic clock and studies the use of optical telecommunication networks for the comparisons of distant clocks and for dissemination of highly accurate time.

Computer clocks can be synchronised with the national time in Finland maintained by MIKES by using Network Time Protocol, NTP. The achievable uncertainty depends on network connections but it is around one millisecond at its best. MIKES maintains NTP ser-vers subject to charge for institutions and companies. We have four servers of the highest level (stratum-1): two of them are synchronised directly to MIKES atomic clocks and two to GPS receivers. Moreover, we control two public NTP servers that are locked to MIKES servers. These servers are available free of charge for public use.