IAS Gyan

Daily News Analysis


23rd April, 2024 Geography


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Picture Courtesy: https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/puducherry/children-experience-zero-shadow-phenomenon/article68091017.ece

Context: The Zero Shadow Day (ZSD) provides a hands-on learning opportunity about the Earth's axial tilt and its effect on sunlight at different latitudes.

About Zero Shadow Day

  • Zero Shadow Day occurs when the Sun is directly overhead at particular latitude, causing objects to cast no shadows at noon.
  • Zero Shadow Day happens twice a year in regions located between the Tropic of Cancer (23.5 degrees north) and the Tropic of Capricorn (23.5 degrees south). The first occurrence is during (April/ May), when the Sun is moving northwards, and the second occurs during (around July/August), when the Sun is moving southwards.
  • Although the exact moment of Zero Shadow occurs instantaneously, the effect can be observed for a short duration, typically lasting for about a minute to a minute-and-a-half. During this time, shadows disappear or become very minimal due to the Sun's direct overhead position.
  • Zero Shadow Day highlights the Earth's axial tilt and its impact on the Sun's position relative to different latitudes. It serves as a practical demonstration of astronomy, showing how the Sun's angle affects shadow lengths and directions throughout the year.


The Hindu


Q. Consider the following statements in the context of the Zero Shadow Day:

1. Zero Shadow Day is experienced when there is no sunlight.

2. It occurs twice a year for all latitudes on Earth.

3. It is caused by the tilt of the Earth's axis.

4. It is a phenomenon observed only in polar regions.

How many of the above statements are incorrect?

A) Only one

B) Only two

C) Only three

D) All four

Answer: C