University of Michigan - Department of Astronomy

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Version: predictions

Seasons Worksheet

Part 1: Ann Arbor

Use the information From the introduction to start filling out table 2: Ann Arbor Observations. You'll come back to this table latter.

Now that you've seen how the Sun moves for the venal equinox, you whould try and figure out how it moves on the other days. For each of the remaining quarter days, predict the date, rising and setting positions, the hours of daylight, and the meridian altitude. Enter these values in table 1. Explain your predictions below table 1 in the space provided.

Table 1: Ann Arbor Predictions
  date Rise Position Set Position Hours of Daylight Meridian Altitude
Summer Solstice          
Autumnal equinox          
Winter Solstice          

Explanations:

Summer Solstice:

 

Autumnal Equinox:

 

Winter Solstice:

 

 

Next we'll check the predictions. Your GSI will run through the remaining positions the same way as in the introduction. Finish filling out table 2 bease on your observations.

Table 2: Ann Arbor Observations

 

Rise position

Rise time

Date

Meridian altitude Deg above South

Set position

Set time

Hours of daylight

Vernal Equinox

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Summer Solstice

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Autumnal Equinox

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Winter Solstice

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

  1. When do we get the most hours of sunlight here in Ann Arbor? 

 

 

 

  1. When is the Sun highest in the sky here in Ann Arbor? 

 

 

 

  1. Where does the sun rise on the equinoxes in Ann Arbor? 

 

 

 

Part 2: Other locations

Again, you'll start with a few predictions. Explain your answers to each.

  1. ______If you were standing on the tropic of cancer on the vernal equinox at local noon, where would the Sun be?
  2. ______If you were standing on the north pole on the vernal equinox at local noon, where would the Sun be?
  3. ______Where would you have to be standing for the Sun to pass directly overhead on the vernal equinox?
  4. ______If you were standing on the tropic of capricorn on the summer solstice at local noon, where would the Sun be?
  5. ______If you were standing on the north pole on the winter solstice at local noon, where would the Sun be?
  6. ______Where would you have to be standing for the Sun to pass directly overhead on the winter solstice?

Your GSI will now run the planetarium to test your predictions As you go through each position and location, make a check or an X in the space before the questions above to indicate whether your prediction was right or wrong. For your wrong answers, try to determine why you got the prediction wrong and write your corrections below.

 

 


Questions

  1. When does the sun rise at the north pole?  When does it set? How does it move in between?
  2. Give 2 reasons why it is warmer in summer than in winter.
  3. Why are the seasons reversed in the southern hemisphere? The Earth is at the farthest distance from the Sun (aphelion) around July 4, and closest to the Sun (perihelion) around January 4.  Does our closest approach to the Sun occur at the same time as the warmest weather in the northern hemisphere? In the southern hemisphere?  Explain.

Last modified: 1/18/06 by SAM based on material from EMP

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