VERNAL EQUINOX

SPRING BEGINS at 4:58PM EDT on March 20. This is the moment of the vernal equinox, when the Sun is centered on the celestial equator, where traditionally day and night are balanced. Some know-it-all types like to mention “equilux” instead of “equinox.” This is some newfangled pedantry that presumes to correct the traditional definition of “12 equal hours of day … Continue reading

WINTER SOLSTICE

WINTER SOLSTICE: Winter begins for the northern hemisphere on December 21 at 22:23 UT (5:23 PM EST). This is the precise moment when the Sun reaches its most southerly declination of the year. For this reason, December 21 is the shortest day of the year. As seen from the northern hemisphere, the noon Sun is lowest in the sky of … Continue reading

DAYLIGHT SAVINGS ENDS

DAYLIGHT SAVINGS: It’s that time again! This Sunday, we all get back that extra hour of sleep that we lost back in the spring. At 2:00 AM Sunday morning, the clocks “fall back” an hour. Daylight Savings Time (DST) ends and we revert back to standard time. Enjoy that extra hour! But the evening darkness will now arrive early, which … Continue reading

The Shadows of the Passing Seasons

In our newsletter and in our Signs & Seasons curriculum, we simply try to point out the easily-observable aspects of Classical Astronomy that are usually overlooked in our modern generation.  One of those aspects is the varying length of shadows over the span of the year. As the Sun moves through the zodiac constellations over the annual cycle of the … Continue reading

Noon Sun During May

  During May, the days grow long much less than in April, since the Sun increases only 7 degrees in declination, compared to 14-1/2 degrees in that previous month. (Compare with the previous month’s graphics.) The length of daylight only increases between 23 to 54 minutes for most locations in the USA, whereas daylight increased nearly two hours in April. … Continue reading

The Sun in Aries During April

Due to the Earth’s annual revolution, the line of sight between the Sun and the background constellations is constantly changing. This appears as the Sun moving east through the constellations of the zodiac. During April, the Sun appears to be moving from the constellation Pisces into Aries. In the process, the Sun appears to be moving north from the celestial … Continue reading

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