The Summer Solstice has arrived: NASA photos depict what the solstice looks like from space.
THE SUMMER SOLSTICE has come, signaling the start of summer. With these magnificent NASA satellite photos, see what the solstice looks like from orbit.
The Summer Solstice, which falls on Monday, June 21, is the official start of summer in the Northern Hemisphere. Druids flock to Stonehenge to commemorate the solstice, and people all throughout the UK begin to anticipate the warm summer months ahead. But what is it about the Summer Solstice that makes it so special?
Each year, the astronomical start of a new season is marked by two solstices: summer in June and winter in December.
We have two equinoxes – from the Latin for “equal night” – between the two solstices, which mark the beginning of spring in March and the end of fall in September.
Our planet orbits the Sun at an angle, according to NASA, the US space agency.
And it’s this tilt – around 23.5 degrees – that causes the seasons to change.
Seasons fluctuate according to how close the Earth is to the Sun, according to popular belief.
However, the seasons change due to the Earth’s rotation, orbit, and axis tilt.
From space, you can see this tilt in action!
“Because Earth orbits at an angle, the Northern Hemisphere is oriented towards the Sun for half of the year – this is summer in the Northern Hemisphere and winter in the Southern Hemisphere,” NASA added.
“The Northern Hemisphere is tilted away from the Sun during the other half of the year, resulting in winter in the north and summer in the south.”
The tilt is most pronounced during the solstices, which can be seen in the images above taken by the Deep Space Climate Observatory satellite.
The first photograph was taken in December, on the Winter Solstice.
The second photograph, on the other hand, was taken in June during the Summer Solstice.
The Northern Hemisphere is clearly positioned away from the Sun on the left, allowing more sunlight to fall south of the equator – winter up north and summer down south.
The converse is true in the second photograph, when North America is more clearly visible basking in the Sun’s rays.
The planet’s poles are aligned and the amount of day and darkness is equal on the day of the spring and fall equinoxes. “Brinkwire News in Condensed Form.”