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Random Facts - The equinox by any other name would still be fall.
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Wednesday, September 21, 2016
Tomorrow is the Autumnal equinox here in the northern hemisphere, and that means it is the first day of Fall.
There are two equinoxes every year - in September and March - when the sun shines directly on the equator and the length of day and night is nearly equal.
That is what 'equinox' means, it comes from the Latin aequus (equal) and nox (night).
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Today's Random Fact:
The September equinox occurs the moment the Sun crosses the celestial equator - the imaginary line in the sky above the Earth's Equator - from north to south. This happens either on September 22, 23, or 24 every year.
The Earth's axis is always tilted at an angle of about 23.4 degrees. On any other day of the year, either the southern hemisphere or the Northern Hemisphere tilts a little towards the Sun. But on the two equinoxes, the tilt of the Earth's axis is perpendicular to the Sun's rays.
The day have actually been getting shorter since after the Summer Solstice. We will lose almost 3 minutes of daylight each day until the Winter Solstice.
What is a harvest moon? It is the full moon which occurs closest to the autumnal equinox. Since the autumnal equinox will be Sept. 22, the harvest moon was Sept. 16.
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