Shortest Day of the Year in Northern Hemisphere?

Tonight starts the winter solstice, it is the first day of winter marked by the shortest day of the year and longest night of the year in the northern hemisphere.

Tuesday December 21 will also see a total lunar eclipse as the Earth casts a shadow on the moon, turning the sky a deep red.

It's a pretty big astronomical event. My question is, why is the winter solstice the shortest day of the year?
What is the scientific explanation of the shortest day of the year in the northern hemisphere?

asked by Olivia in Geography | 2722 views | 12-20-2010 at 06:09 PM

The winter solstice marks the shortest day and the longest night of the year. The sun appears at its lowest point in the sky, and its noontime elevation appears to be the same for several days before and after the solstice.

For the first time in 456 years this year’s winter solstice will coincide with a full lunar eclipse.

Though the winter solstice lasts only an instant in time, the term is also a turning point to midwinter or the first day of winter to refer to the day on which it occurs.

The Earth's axis will hit full tilt, the North Pole angled 23.5 degrees away from the sun after which the days will gradually grow longer until the summer solstice in 2011.

answered by Noah | 12-20-2010 at 06:10 PM

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