4 Jan 2023

Earth Will Reach Closest Point To Sun On January 4 Night, What Is Significance Of This Event


Hyderabad: Planet Earth will reach the closest point to Sun on Wednesday night, Planetary Society of India (PSI) said.
Earth will reach the closest point to Sun in its annual elliptical orbit at 14 crore 70 lakh 98 thousand 928 km from Sun at 9.44 pm Wednesday night, PSI Director N Sri Raghunandan Kumar said.
Kumar said Earth orbits the Sun in an elliptical path—which is oval, not circular. This means that the Earth does not remain at same distance from Sun during its orbit

Interestingly, we’re closest to the Sun in the winter and farthest away in the hot summer.
Aphelion and Perihelion: Aphelion is the point of the Earth’s orbit that is farthest away from the Sun. Perihelion is the point of the Earth’s orbit that is nearest to the Sun.
In other words, due to the celestial event of Perihelion on January 4, Earth will be 49 lakh 94 thousand 325 km closer to the Sun compared to July 7, 2023 in its orbit.

Are Aphelion and Perihelion Related to Earth’s Seasons?

It’s the not the distance from the Sun that causes our seasons. Seasons happen because Earth’s axis is tilted at an angle. It’s because Earth orbits the Sun on a tilt that our planet gets more or less of the Sun’s direct rays at different times of the year.

Aphelion and Perihelion on Mars

Though aphelion and perihelion are terms mostly used in reference to Earth since it’s our home planet, they are also relevant to other planets orbiting the Sun. Every planet has points in the orbits when they are farthest or closest away from their star.
For example, planet Mars has an even more elliptical orbit than Earth. In comparison, Earth’s orbit seems almost circular; this almost-circular orbit may be why Earth’s climate is relatively stable.
Mars also has four seasons but they are twice as long because it takes about two Earth years for Mars to go around the Sun. For Mars, going from a colder winter to a warmer spring can be quite dramatic.

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