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September equinox

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

UT date and time of
equinoxes and solstices on Earth[1][2]
event equinox solstice equinox solstice
month March June September December
year
day time day time day time day time
2015 20 22:45 21 16:38 23 08:20 22 04:48
2016 20 04:31 20 22:35 22 14:21 21 10:45
2017 20 10:29 21 04:25 22 20:02 21 16:29
2018 20 16:15 21 10:07 23 01:54 21 22:22
2019 20 21:58 21 15:54 23 07:50 22 04:19
2020 20 03:50 20 21:43 22 13:31 21 10:03
2021 20 09:37 21 03:32 22 19:21 21 15:59
2022 20 15:33 21 09:14 23 01:04 21 21:48
2023 20 21:25 21 14:58 23 06:50 22 03:28
2024 20 03:07 20 20:51 22 12:44 21 09:20
2025 20 09:02 21 02:42 22 18:20 21 15:03
Illumination of Earth by the Sun on the day of an equinox
Illumination of Earth by the Sun on the day of an equinox

The September equinox (or Southward equinox) is the moment when the Sun appears to cross the celestial equator, heading southward. Due to differences between the calendar year and the tropical year, the September equinox can occur at any time between September 21 and 24.

At the equinox, the Sun as viewed from the equator rises due east and sets due west. Before the Southward equinox, the Sun rises and sets more northerly, and afterwards, it rises and sets more southerly.

The equinox may be taken to mark the end of summer and the beginning of autumn (autumnal equinox) in the Northern Hemisphere, while marking the end of winter and the start of spring (vernal equinox) in the Southern Hemisphere.[3]

Occurrences

Sunset at the equinox from the site of Pizzo Vento at Fondachelli Fantina, Sicily
Sunset at the equinox from the site of Pizzo Vento at Fondachelli Fantina, Sicily

The September equinox is one point in time commonly used to determine the length of the tropical year.

Date and time of the September equinox[4] that occur from the year 2014 to 2024 (UT) are listed as follows:

Date time
2014-09-23 02:29
2015-09-23 08:21
2016-09-22 14:21
2017-09-22 20:02
2018-09-23 01:54
2019-09-23 07:50
2020-09-22 13:30
2021-09-22 19:21
2022-09-23 01:03
2023-09-23 06:49
2024-09-22 12:43

Constellation

The point where the Sun crosses the celestial equator southwards is called the First Point of Libra. However, due to the precession of the equinoxes, this point is no longer in the constellation Libra, but rather in Virgo.

The solar point of the September equinox passed from Libra and into Virgo in −729 (730 BCE) and will enter Leo in 2439.

Apparent movement of the Sun in relation to the horizon

At the equinox, the Sun rises directly in the east and sets directly in the west. However, because of refraction it will usually appear slightly above the horizon at the moment when its "true" middle is rising or setting. For viewers at the north or south poles, it moves virtually horizontally on or above the horizon, not obviously rising or setting apart from the movement in "declination" (and hence altitude) of a little under a half (0.39) degree per day.

For observers in either hemisphere not at the poles, the further one goes in time away from the September equinox in the 3 months before that equinox, the more to the north the Sun has been rising and setting, and for the 3 months afterwards it rises and sets more and more to the south.

Culture

Calendars

The September equinox marked the first day of the French Republican Calendar.

Commemorations

West Asia
East Asia
  • The Mid-Autumn Festival is celebrated on the 15th day of the 8th lunar month, often near the autumnal equinox day, and is an official holiday in mainland China, Hong Kong, Taiwan and in many countries with a significant Chinese minority. As the lunar calendar is not synchronous with the Gregorian calendar, this date could be anywhere from mid-September to early October.
  • In Korea, Chuseok is a major harvest festival and a three-day holiday celebrated around the Autumn Equinox.
  • The traditional East Asian calendars divide a year into 24 solar terms (节气, literally "climatic segments"), and the autumnal equinox (Qiūfēn, Chinese and Japanese: 秋分; Korean: 추분; Vietnamese: Thu phân) marks the middle of the autumn season. In this context, the Chinese character 分 means "(equal) division" (within a season).
  • In Japan Autumnal Equinox Day (秋分の日, Shūbun no hi) is a public holiday. Higan (お彼岸) is a Buddhist holiday exclusively celebrated by Japanese sects during both the Spring and Autumnal Equinox.
Europe
  • The traditional harvest festival in the United Kingdom was celebrated on the Sunday of the full moon closest to the September equinox.
  • The Southward equinox was "New Year's Day" in the French Republican Calendar, which was in use from 1793 to 1805. The French First Republic was proclaimed and the French monarchy was abolished on September 21, 1792, making the following day (the equinox day that year) the first day of the "Republican Era" in France. The start of every year was to be determined by astronomical calculations following the real Sun and not the mean Sun.
  • Dożynki is a Slavic harvest festival. In pre-Christian times the feast usually fell on the autumn equinox.
Neopaganism
  • Neopagans observe the September equinox as a cardinal point on the Wheel of the Year. In the Northern Hemisphere some varieties of paganism adapt Mabon traditions. In the Southern Hemisphere, the vernal equinox corresponds with Ostara.
Americas

See also

References

  1. ^ United States Naval Observatory (January 4, 2018). "Earth's Seasons and Apsides: Equinoxes, Solstices, Perihelion, and Aphelion". Retrieved September 18, 2018.[dead link]
  2. ^ "Solstices and Equinoxes: 2001 to 2100". AstroPixels.com. February 20, 2018. Retrieved December 21, 2018.
  3. ^ "Defining Seasons". Time and Date AS. Retrieved May 31, 2019.
  4. ^ "Solstices & Equinoxes for UTC (Surrounding 10 Years)". www.timeanddate.com. Retrieved September 20, 2019.
  5. ^ "Visitors Guide to the Woodhenge". Retrieved December 19, 2017.
  6. ^ Iseminger, William. "Welcome the Fall Equinox at Cahokia Mounds". Illinois Department of Natural Resources. Retrieved December 20, 2017.
  7. ^ "Winter Solstice Sunrise Observance at Cahokia Mounds". Collinsville Chamber of Commerce. Retrieved December 20, 2017.
  8. ^ "Cahokia Mounds Mark Spring Equinox : The keepers of Cahokia Mounds will host a spring gathering to celebrate the vernal equinox". Indian Country Today. Indian Country Media Network. Retrieved December 20, 2017.
This page was last edited on 5 May 2020, at 10:47
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