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Everything you need to know about the summer solstice

The summer solstice will occur on Thursday, June 20, 2024, at 4:51 PM. You may have some questions. Well, I have the answers for you.


What is the summer solstice?

The summer solstice marks the point when the Earth is tilted toward the sun at its maximum angle. As a result, the sun appears at its highest elevation in the sky. This elevation changes very little for several days before and after the summer solstice, as these changes occur in very small increments.

Source: NASA

The summer solstice occurs when the sun is directly over the Tropic of Cancer, which is located at 23.5º N. For places north of the Tropic of Cancer (including us in the northern hemisphere), it's the longest day of the year, and the sun is at its highest point in the sky.


Does the summer solstice impact our seasons?

It is a common misconception that Earth is closest to the sun (perihelion) during the summer and furthest away (aphelion) during the winter. That, however, is incorrect. During the summer, Earth is at aphelion, meaning it is the furthest away from the sun.

Now, I'm sure you're asking: how do we get seasons? The answer is the Earth's tilt. During the summer, the Earth is tilted furthest towards the sun, while during the winter, the Earth is tilted furthest away from the sun.

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