Day and Night

Day & Night
The Earth spins on its axis once each day.

The half facing the Sun is in daylight, and the half facing away is in darkness.


Day and Night

  • Earth turns eastwards – this mean that our Sun rises in the east as each part of the world spins round to face the Sun.
  • as Earth turns – the stars come back to the same place in the night every 23 hours, 56 minutes and 4.09 seconds – this is called a sidereal day or star day.
  • Earth takes 24 hours for the Sun to come back to the same place in daytime sky – this is solar day, and it is slightly longer than the star day because the earth moves one degree further round the Sun each day.
  • for each planets – the length of day depends on how fast it spins and sometimes its speed in orbit.
  • a day on Jupiter lasts less than 10 hours because Jupiter spins so fast!
  • a day on Mars is 24.6 hours – similar to a day on Earth.


Did you know?

  • a day on the Moon lasts nearly one month.


Back to The Solar System page / next to  Eclipse  page.

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