The Northern Hemisphere’s longest day of the year, or the day with the longest amount of daylight, is the summer solstice. Here are some intriguing details regarding the astronomical event brought on by Earth’s axis tilt this year, along with the date and time.
The summer solstice, also known as the June solstice, marks the beginning of the summer season in the Northern Hemisphere and the beginning of the winter season in the Southern Hemisphere. This astronomical event happens on June 20 at 10:32 p.m. CDT (UTC-5) for people in North America, and on June 21 at 03:32 UTC for everyone else.
For those who are unaware, June, also known as the summer solstice, is the longest day of the year in the Northern Hemisphere, or the day with the longest period of daylight, whereas it signals the beginning of winter in the Southern Hemisphere and is the shortest day there. The June solstice, which is brought on by the Earth’s tilt on its axis and its journey in orbit around the Sun, will occur this year on Tuesday, June 21, 2022 at 9:14 UTC (4:14 a.m. CDT).
In images: What is the summer solstice and how is it observed globally?
It’s now the summer solstice! But what’s the big deal, and how do people everywhere mark the solstice? It also signifies the astrological beginning of summer and the lengthiest day of the year.
The Latin words “sol” (for the sun) and “sistere” (for immobile or standing still) are the source of the English term “solstice.” It takes place twice a year, once in the Southern Hemisphere and once in the Northern Hemisphere (between June 20 and 22 depending on the year and time zone) (between Dec 20-23).
1. The ancestors were aware of the sun’s course across the sky, the duration of daylight, and the places where sunrise and sunset occurred changed on a regular basis throughout the year. In addition, people erected structures like Stonehenge in England to worship the sun, track its yearly course, and foretell its motions.
2. The north pole is tilted more directly toward the sun at the June solstice compared to any other time of the year, and the south pole is tilted more directly away from the sun. As a result, days are longer than 12 hours in all regions north of the equator and shorter than 12 hours in all locations south.
3. The term “Tropic of Cancer” refers to the line of latitude where the sun stops going northward at the June solstice before turning around and moving southward once more. A few thousand years ago, the solstice occurred when the sun was in the constellation of Cancer, which is Latin for “crab.”
4. On the summer solstice, the sun’s path across the sky is CURVED, NOT STRAIGHT.
5. On the day of the summer solstice, the sun rises farthest left on the horizon and sets at its rightmost conceivable position, illuminating areas of your home that are illuminated at no other time.
6. The summer solstice rotates between June 20, 21, and 22 based on Earth’s current orbit and is not fixed because it is determined by the mechanics of our solar system and not by human calendar.
7.The Wiccans and other Neopagan organisations refer to the summer solstice as Litha, while some Christian churches observe it as St. John’s Day to remember the birth of John the Baptist.The summer solstice is also known as Midsummer or the First Day of Summer.
8. According to legend, the Vikings engaged in ritual human sacrifice, particularly during the solstice, by hanging dead people and animals from trees as an offering to the gods.
9. In accordance with paganism, garlands of herbs and flowers, such as “chasing devil,” or St. John’s Wort, were worn as a form of protection to fend off bad spirits that were thought to manifest on the summer solstice.
10. Iceland is the only country outside of the Arctic Circle where we may see the sun “not set,” as in northern Iceland, if one physically watches the sun from the top of a cliff overlooking the sea, the light dips all the way down to the horizon, brushes the water, then starts to rise again.