Perihelion Day is the day that the Earth is closest the Sun. This day is unique and fascinating because it provides more information and fun facts about the Earth’s proximity to the Sun.
Although the Earth rotates around the Sun, it does so in an oval-shaped orbit called an ellipse. This means that the Earth moves in a constant circle around the Sun, moving closer and further away.
Astronomers and scientists continued to explore the science of Earth’s closeness to the Sun in the year 1596. Johannes Kepler coined the term “perihelion” in this year. The term “aphelion”, which was also used to indicate the day when Earth was furthest from Sun, was also coined by Johannes Kepler.
The center of Earth lies exactly 91,406,842,000,000 miles from the center Sun every year. This is approximately two weeks after the winter solstice. This happens at 2 AM on January 4, and it is happening in the middle of night.
The Earth’s orbital speed at this time of year is at its highest. The Earth’s proximity to the Sun does not affect its temperature or coolness.
Perihelion Day is a slow creeper in time. This is an interesting fact. Perihelion Day was actually celebrated on the 21st of December in 1246. This is the winter solstice. Over the eight centuries since then, the day has moved slowly so that it moves about every 58 years.
Astronomers predict that Perihelion Day in 6430 will coincide with March’s spring equinox. It’s unlikely that anyone will ever see it, however.
Enjoy Perihelion Day by trying these interesting and fun ideas
Invite your family, friends and coworkers to join you for Perihelion Day. Although most people won’t know what Perihelion Day is, it’s a great excuse to throw an event in January’s darkest days. You could use a space theme to decorate the Perihelion day party and make snacks that match the theme such as cupcakes or cookies in the shape of the Sun and Earth.
Perihelion Day is a great opportunity to let your inner child out and create a science project. You could create a 3D model of the Earth, Sun, and Moon from their perspectives. Consider the effect of proximity to the Sun on seasons and shadows.