The reason for losing direct sunlight for a good two months is due to the fact that the Earth is tilted on its own axis of rotation by around 23.5°. The Poles are designated at being at 90° latitude North or South. 90° minus 23.5° puts us at a latitude of 66.5°: the Arctic or Antarctic circles. Anything North of the Arctic Circle (officially designated as 66.30° N) or South of the Antarctic Circle (66.30° S) has alternatively 24 hours of sunlight or 0 hours of sunlight.

Sharing  images taken by SANAE63 Team Leader and Medical Abigail Paton taken during the last week

When the South Pole is pointing toward the Sun in the summer, the Sun doesn’t set. Similarly, when it is pointing away from the Sun in the winter, the Sun doesn’t rise. Additionally, the long days and nights pair with the near-constant cold.

Sunrise and Sunset in Antarctica

© South African National Antarctic Programme • Managed and administered by Antarctic Legacy of South Africa • Photo Credits
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