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Estival (Midsummer) Solstice at 2:34pmPST June 20, 2020

Today, June 20th, 2020 at 2:34pmPST is the Estival (Midsummer) Solstice, a single moment in time when the Sun reaches it's highest annual position in the northern hemisphere sky, making it the longest day of the year. However, if you are in the southern hemisphere, today is the shortest day of the year & the longest winter night.

The Sun's position in the sky determines the length of day that a location on Earth experiences, and is dependent on the tilt of Earth's axis & Earth's location relative to the Sun. The North Pole points to the North Star, and that won't change enough to be apparent for a long time. It takes 21,000 years for Earth's axial tilt to change by less than 2.5 degrees, so we won't notice any change in axial tilt as the Earth revolves around the Sun once a year, or even 80 times in a human lifetime.

In June the North Pole is pointing toward the Sun, so the Northern hemisphere gets more hours of sun light & experiences the summer conditions of hot, long days. In the north we are lucky to experience relatively mild summers compared to those of the southern hemisphere. During the northern hemisphere summer, the Earth is further from the sun (closer to Aphelion) than it is during the southern hemisphere summer. Summer temperatures in Africa and Australia are so extreme because the Earth is closer to the Sun (closer to Perihelion) while the Sun is positioned high in the sky.

Earth's seasons, equinoxes, and solstices are the result of Earth's revolution (orbit) around the Sun. Enjoy this long day, because as of tomorrow, the days will start getting shorter.

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