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The earth is as far as it ever gets from the sun Monday

Summer Heat Trends
Posted at 8:39 AM, Jul 05, 2021
and last updated 2021-07-05 10:39:25-04

SALT LAKE CITY — On Monday July 5, the Earth is at the point in its orbit called aphelion which is basically fancy talk for "farthest from the Sun,” according to Utah’s NASA Solar System Ambassador, Patrick Wiggins.

While surprising to some that we’d be furthest from the Sun when it is so hot out, the change in distance between when Earth is closest in January and now when it's furthest is small and doesn’t do much to change our temperatures one way or the other, Wiggins said.

The difference has to do with the Earth being tilted on its axis.

This time of year we in the northern hemisphere are tilted toward the Sun. So it’s higher in the sky and thus stays in the sky much longer than in January when we are tilted away from the Sun causing it to be lower and in the sky for far fewer hours.

Of course, those who love the cold can just hop on a plane and travel south of the equator Wiggins said. Down there they are tilted away from the Sun and are enjoying (or not) the frigid temps of winter.