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Earth – Latitudes & Longitudes

The Earth is spherical in shape and due to the rotation of the Earth on its Axis the Earth bulges near the Equator. Latitude and longitude, coordinate system....

The Earth is spherical in shape and due to the rotation of the Earth on its Axis the Earth bulges near the Equator. Latitude and longitude, coordinate system by means of which the position or location of any place on Earth’s surface can be determined and described.

  • The Parallel of Latitudes extends from the Equator to 90 degrees North Pole and 90 degrees South Pole.
  • If the latitude are drawn at an interval of 1 degree, then in each of the hemispheres there will be 89 latitude lines that will add up to 179 total lines.
  • They are mainly the east-west circles that connect all the locations of the Earth.
  • The distance between two parallel latitudes is 111km.
  • All the latitudes are parallel to the Equator.

Five Major Parallel Of Latitudes

  • Equator is the imaginary line that divides the earth into two hemispheres.
  • The northern hemisphere and the Southern hemisphere.
  • It is the longest line of latitude.
  • The Equator covers 40075km out of which 78.8% covers the water area while 21.3% covers the surface area.
Tropic of Cancer (23½ºN)
  • It is also known as Northern Tropic and the Sun is directly overhead at this position in June.
  • The Tropic of Cancer is located at 23 and a 1/2 degrees in the Northern Hemisphere.
  • The position of the tropic of cancer is fluctuating because of the longitudinal alignment. But the distance between the tropic of cancer and the Antarctic Circle remains the same as they move at the same speed.
  • The length of the Tropic of Cancer is 36,788 km.
Tropic of Capricorn (23½ºS)
  • It is the Southern Tropic which is currently at 23 and a 1/2 degree south.
  • The length of the Tropic of Capricorn is the same as the Tropic of Cancer.
  • The Southern Tropic covers 3% of the total world’s population.
  • The sun is overhead once a year in December and therefore experiences the maximum heat.
Arctic Circle (66½ºN)
  • Out of the five parallel latitudes, Arctic Circle is the Northernmost circle which is at 66 and 1/2 degrees north of the Equator.
  • The position of the Arctic is not always fixed.
  • As per updates, the Arctic is drifting towards the North at 15km/year.
  • The Arctic Circle is 16000km long which covers 4% of the Earth’s surface.
Antarctic Circle (66½ºS)
  • Antarctic Circle is the Southernmost circle which is currently at 66 and a 1/2 degrees south of the Equator.
  • Like the Arctic Circle, the Antarctic Circle is also shifting southward at a speed of 15km/year.
  • The Antarctic Circle is also 16000km long which covers 4% of the Earth’s surface towards the south.

Longitude :  Prime Meridian, Eastern and Western Hemispheres

  • Longitude is the east-west measurement of the prime meridian.
  • There are 180 vertical east longitudes of the Prime Meridian and 180 vertical west longitudes of the Prime Meridian.
Prime Meridian
  • The line that passes through the Greenwich, British Royal Observatory is regarded as Prime meridian.
  • It is the base Longitude which is 0 degrees from where 180 degrees east and west directions are considered.
  • Hence, Prime of Meridian is the base of world time.
  • The Prime Meridian divides the Earth into two halves, Eastern and Western hemisphere.
Eastern Hemisphere
  • It is the east of the Prime Meridian that covers the country like Africa, Asia, Europe, Australia, and the islands of Oceania.
  • The landmass of the Eastern Hemisphere is larger than the western part. Therefore, 80% of the human population survives in the Eastern Hemisphere.
  • Eastern Hemisphere is also termed as Oriental Hemisphere.
Western Hemisphere
  • It is the west of the Prime Meridian that covers North and South America and some parts of Africa, Europe, Antarctica, and also Asia.
  • The center of the Western Hemisphere is at the Pacific Ocean whose nearest land is Genovesa Island.

Longitude and Time

  • The Earth takes 24 hours time to complete one Rotation.
  • The Sun takes 12 hours time to cross Eastern and Western hemispheres.
  • The Sun crosses 15-degree of Longitude per hour in every four minutes of time.
  • To keep uniform the time range in all the territorial limits of the country, the central meridian is regarded as the Standard Meridian whose local time is considered as the standard time for the whole country.
  • There are a total of 24 time zones in the world.
  • It is by the movement of Earth, moon and the planets, time is measured on Earth.
  • The International Date Line passes through the 180-degree line of longitude.
  • The difference between 0-degree longitude and IDL is 12 hours.
  • The calculation of time stands like this: the earth rotates 1-degree in four minutes. When it is noon at Greenwich, time at 15-degree east of Greenwich will be (15*4=60 minutes) which is 1 hour ahead of Greenwich Time.

Earth – Latitudes & Longitudes,Earth – Latitudes & Longitudes

Read More : Interior of the Earth

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