Time in MORSE

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7. Time in MORSE

7.1. GMT and local time

Time in a MORSE CU appears in various forms:

  • GMT — entries to the CU are stored and transferred in this form

  • Local time — GMT time modified by CU time zone and by summer time

  • Operator time — GMT time modified by PC time zone

  • PC time — PC time including time zone and PC summer time

  • Uptime — number of sec from starting CU

Individual times appear in these menus:

  • GMT

    • (s)ervice (s)tatus

    • (E)vent log

    • in protocols such as Mars-A, Modbus, IEC, MAS

  • Local time

    • (s)ervice (s)tatus

    • (s)ervice (t)ime

    • in protocols such as Mars-A, Modbus, IEC, MAS

  • Operator time

    • d(i)ag (M)onitoring

    • d(i)ag stat (l)ogs

  • PC time

    • start Setr

    • Alt+P, together with Setr parameters

  • Uptime

    • (s)ervice (s)tatus

    • (s)ervice (t)ime (s)econds

    • d(i)ag (t)ests stat. (t)est

A general idea of time is provided by menu (s)ervice unit (s)tatus, which in addition to other information contains local time, uptime, GMT and a record of the last time entry to the CU:

 local time:2007-11-21 07:53:12 LOC; uptime:4944 sec
   day time:2007-11-21 06:53:12 GMT; log write at:86400
last update:2007-11-21 06:44:23 GMT

During the period of summer time the note “daylight savings” appear:

 local time:2007-05-01 08:00:53 LOC/daylight savings; uptime:5405 sec
   day time:2007-05-01 06:00:53 GMT; log write at:86400

Overview of times and where to use them:

7.2. Inserting local time

An entry of local time LOC is done in menu (s)ervice (t)ime.

(d)ay time   (s)econds
set (n)ew time
dat(e)  set ne(w) date

The new local time entered using commands “stw” and “std” is adjusted according to the relationship given below by  DI(F)F and DST and the GMT time obtained in this way is maintained in the CU internal clock.

If we enter a date here which changes the year it is necessary to restart the CU (sgB) or in “Ue” perform (I)nit and (S)ync or wait till midnight when the year will update automatically.

7.3. Summer time

GMT and local time are bound by the relationship:


world time maintained in the CU clock


shift according to longitude, e.g. for central Europe 3600 s


shift by 1 hour during summer time (daylight savings)


local time set in menu (s)ervice (t)ime

Values DI(F)F and DST are controlled from  menu (U)nit (e)dit, which amongst other things contain :

Time (Z)one for DST:EU Time zone DI(F)F:3600sec 
Summer time (all to zero - off):
start (1)month:3 (2)day:30
end   (3)month:10 (4)day:26

By selecting (Z)one (E)U in this menu we can switch on automatic use of summer time DST  as well as annual automatic set-up of the correct date at the beginning and end of DST. In this case the item “obsolete(<605) Time (z)one” is invalid.

Alternatively by selecting (Z)one (N)ONE we can switch to manual mode and by selecting items (1), (2), (3), (4) we can select a fixed date at the beginning and end of DST. If we enter zeros here summer time is disabled.

Example of the transition to summer time.

Enter a time, for example, containing the year 2004:


In  menu “Ue” set automatic selection of dates for summer time (EU), local time shift 3600sec and run Init and Sync:

Ue Enter 
Time (Z)one for DST:EU Time zone DI(F)F:3600sec 
I  Enter
S  Enter

Then in menu “Ue” we can read the dates at the beginning and end of summer time:

Time (Z)one for DST:EU Time zone DI(F)F:3600sec 
Summer time (all to zero - off):
start (1)month:3 (2)day:28
end   (3)month:10 (4)day:31

Enter the date and time right before the end of winter time:


Now by repeatedly calling menu “ss” monitor the transition to summer time :

local time:2004-03-28 01:59:08 LOC; secs from cold start:19396
  day time:2004-03-28 00:59:08 GMT; log write at:105469

local time:2004-03-28 01:59:58 LOC; secs from cold start:19446
  day time:2004-03-28 00:59:58 GMT; log write at:105469

local time:2004-03-28 03:00:02 LOC/daylight savings; secs from cold 
  day time:2004-03-28 01:00:02 GMT; log write at:105469

The transition took place at 01:00:00 GMT, when the difference between local time and GMT exceeded 1 hour.

If we want to monitor the transition from summer time to winter time, we would have to set the date to 31.10.2004, local time to 01:59:00 and wait 61 minutes until local time reaches 03:00:00 (i.e. 01:00:00 GMT). Then the local time returns to 02:00:01 (i.e. 01:00:01 GMT).

7.4. Synchronisation of time in the MORSE system

A precise source of time is available from :

  • a receiver of DCF time signals

  • GPS system receiver

  • WALRUS sw running on a linux computer

  • user protocols MARS-A, MODBUS, MAS, IEC 870-5-2(L&G) and others

  • time can be entered manually from menu (s)ervice (t)ime

Synchronisation of time between adjacent CUs can be set up in “Ue”:

Time sync:
 (i)n:1 Sr(c):690F5501 (p)eriod:3600
(O)ut:0 ds(t):00000000 p(e)riod:0

Time data can be periodically taken from an adjacent CU (1st row) or passed to another CU (2nd row). The first method allows for the synchronisation of more stations from one source.

The service is performed by the node determined by the selection (i)n or (O)ut, time data is requested from the CU Sr(c) or sent to the CU ds(t), synchronisation repeats with a period (p)eriod or p(e)riod. Entry of the period (in seconds) activates the respective mode.

The source or destination address needs to be selected as a directly accessible address, i.e. without routing. The accuracy of synchronisation is in milliseconds.

During synchronisation GMT time is transferred, and in a synchronised CU the local time is derived according to menu Ue.

7.5. Minute impulse in CU

The minute impulse is a signal generated by the CU every minute for a period of 1 second. The signal is generated only in the case where function (M)INP:ON is switched on in the menu Communication unit.

Communication unit:
service (d)est:00000000 (N):0
(U)cc limit:130 * 0.1V  (h)yst.:2 * 0.1V
(s)tatus:0000 (P)SWD:OFF (L)OGW:OFF (M)INP:ON

The impulse is generated on the following pins:

type of modempin namepin numberportSW
MR25X to HW version 11RxC35SCC2version 630 and higher
MR25XS to HW version 11RxC + CD35 + 13SCC2version 630 and higher
MR25X HW version 12 and higherCD13SCC2version 630 and higher
MR400 and MR900, Cannon connectorCD1(RS232)SCC0version 714 and higher

Note – the minute impulse is only generated on the whole minute. If there is a change in time in the CU the first delay between impulses will be truncated or extended in proportion to the change in time, for example:

  • current time in CU: 10:00:30

  • 30 seconds elapsed from beginning of last minute impulse

  • time in CU is changed to : 11:11:10

  • 50 seconds remain from beginning of new impulse

  • in such a case the delay between impulses is 50+30 = 80 seconds