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Did You know?...Equinoxes.

There are two equinoxes every year. The March equinox also known as the autumnal equinox, and the September equinox or the spring equinox, sometimes called the vernal equinox.

Image above courtesy NASA/JPL-Caltech.

The equinoxes are the only time when both the southern and northern hemispheres experience approximately the same amount of daytime and nighttime.

At the time of an equinox the Sun rises due east and sets due west. These are the only two days of the year when this happens. On other days the Sun rises either north or south of "due east" and sets north or south of "due west."

The word equinox means equal night and comes from the Latin words “aequi”” which means "equal," and “nox” which means "night."

Earth isn’t the only planet to have equinoxes. Any planet with a tilted axis will experience an equinox. For Jupiter this is every 6 years, 14 years for Saturn, 42 years for Uranus and 82 years for Neptune. Saturn's most recent equinox was on 11th August 2009 and the next will take place on 6th May 2025. The most recent equinox on Mars was on 7th February 2021 and the next will be on 24th February 2022.


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