11 Facts about Sunrise and Sunset

What are Sunrise and Sunset? What is the impact of the Celestial Equator, Equinoxes, and Refraction of Rays on Sunrise and Sunset? What are the Sunrise and Sunset Time in Summer and Winter?
11 Facts about Sunrise and Sunset
Photo by Konevi

There are people who wake up before sunrise and watch the sunrise while others enjoy the sunset with a positive impact of it on their lives. You might also know some people who can talk endlessly about sunrise and sunset. But do they know everything? The world is way larger than you can imagine and not every place has the same sunrise and sunset timings. Now that is confusing, right? , are you ready for a journey to know the facts about sunrise and sunset along with world sunrise time, world sunset time, sunrise sunset in summer, and sunrise sunset in winter?

1. Sunrise and Sunset

11 Facts about Sunrise and Sunset 1
Photo by kazuend on Unsplash

When the upper edge of the sun rises over the horizon, it is termed sunrise. At this moment only a fraction of the circumference of the sun is visible over the horizon. When the sun slowly disappears into the horizon, and you can see only its upper edge, it is the time of sunset. It is also termed sundown. (See What Would Happen if There was No Sunlight?)

2. Concept of Celestial Equator

To understand the difference between the timing of the sunset and sunrise, this is the first factor to be considered. The celestial equator is the plane parallel to the equator of the Earth. It is the plane on which the sun seems to journey around the Earth that rises and sets then again rises and sets. Here, it does not mean that the sun rotates around the Earth. Also, check out What is One Trip Around the Sun Called?

3. Concept of Equinoxes

It is a phenomenon in which the sun crosses the celestial equator of the Earth, making the day and night equal around the world. This phenomenon happens twice a year when the day and night are of equal lengths approximately around the world. (See At What Time Does The Afternoon Finish And Evening Start?)

4. Time required to reach the Horizon

I hope you find it interesting to know about sunrise and sunset. Sunrise ends as soon as the upper edge of the sun becomes visible above the horizon. The center of the sun remains below the horizon at that point, and it takes 1 more minute for it to become visible. The same phenomenon takes place at sunset when the lower edge becomes invisible considering this as the sunset. But it takes one minute for the center to reach the horizon. This process adds another 2 minutes to the daytime. (See What is the Third Planet closest to the Sun?)

5. Impact of Refraction of Rays

A person watching the sunrise : 11 Facts about Sunrise and Sunset 5
Photo by Joshua Earle on Unsplash

When you see the upper edge of the sun over the horizon, it is actually not there that early. The bending (refraction) of the rays of the sun makes it visible 3 minutes (180 seconds) before sunrise. The same thing happens at sunset when the lower edge of the sun appears below the horizon, and it actually takes place after 3 minutes (180 seconds). So, considerably, the sunrise appears before 3 minutes and is delayed by 3 minutes. Therefore, the length of the daytime hours is 12 hours and 8 minutes (2 minutes + 6 minutes). (See What Time does it get Dark?)

6. Myths about Sunrise and Sunset

You have learned about sunrise and sunset, that the sun rises in the east and sets in the west, but it is just a concept that researchers obtained from specific cases. You would be thrilled to know that the sun rises almost east and sets towards almost west only on two days of the year, which you know as equinoxes. On ordinary days the sun rises in the north or south of the east and sets in the north or south of the west. (See When do Days Start to get Longer?)

7. Sunrise and Sunset at the Equator

Irrespective of the seasons, the sun rises and sets at the right angle from the horizon (perpendicular to the horizon). By the horizon, the path of the sun is divided equally between day and night. Therefore, there are 12 daytime hours and 12 nighttime hours. There are two reasons for the change in daytime and nighttime duration:

8. Changes in World Sunrise Time and World Sunset Time

11 Facts about Sunrise and Sunset 2
Photo by Sebastien Gabriel on Unsplash

There is a huge difference in the sunrise and sunset timings in different places of the world. This happens because of the rotation of the Earth and the changes in the setting and rising points of the sun. Every day, the sun rises a bit towards the southeast which corresponds to its setting position every day. This slight change in the position results in the change of sunrise and sunset timings on a daily basis. People living on the eastern side of Earth get to see the sunrise before the people living on the western side. Must read what is revolution and rotation?

9. Sunrise Sunset in Summer

You may have noticed the facts about sunrise and sunset, that there is a time difference between sunrise and sunset. During summers, the portion of the sun is greater above the horizon during daytime and less during the sunset. At the beginning of the summer all day the sun is above the horizon. It means that the path of the sun during summers is above the horizon. (See Why do people like watching sunsets?)

10. Sunrise Sunset in Winter

At the beginning of the winter, the path of the sun changes and stays completely below the horizon. It means the portion of the path of the sun is greater above the horizon during the night and below the horizon during the day.

11. World Sunrise Time and World Sunset Time

11 Facts about Sunrise and Sunset 4
Photo by Paul Pastourmatzis on Unsplash

As per the new ground mapping research carried on by the World Urban Forum 10 in 2021, there are around 10,000 cities in the world. However, I have mentioned here the top cities in the world and their sunrise and sunset timings (as per today’s timing).

  • Beijing, China – 04:59 am & 07:42 pm
  • Buenos Aires, Argentina – 07:56 am & 06:04 pm
  • Cairo, Egypt – 05:06 am & 06:56 pm
  • Delhi, India – 05:36 am & 07:20 pm
  • Dhaka, Bangladesh – 05:22 am & 06:47 pm
  • Guangzhou, China – 05:52 am & 07:15 pm
  • Istanbul, Turkey – 05:48 am & 08:32 pm
  • Karachi, Pakistan – 05:54 am & 07:23 pm
  • Kinshasa, Democratic Republic of the Congo – 06:08 am & 06:02 pm
  • Kolkata, India – 05:03 am & 06:23 pm, I guess you are enjoying learning about sunrise and sunset
  • Lagos, Nigeria – 06:39 am & 08:52 pm
  • Manila, Philippines – 05:36 am & 06:29 pm
  • Mexico City, Mexico – 07:08 am & 08:17 pm
  • Mumbai, India – 06:11 am & 07:19 pm 
  • New York, United States of America – 05:41 am & 08:23 pm
  • Osaka & Kyoto (Kinki major metropolitan area), Japan – 04:59 am & 04:57 am and 07:10 pm
  • Sao Paulo, Brazil – 06:47 am & 05:39 pm
  • Shanghai, China – 05:03 am & 06:58 pm
  • Tianjin, China – 04:59 am & 07:34 pm
  • Tokyo, Japan – 04:40 am & 06:56 pm

So, today you got to learn about sunrise and sunset, along with world sunrise time, and world sunset time. And I hope now you understand the difference between the sunrise sunset in summer and sunrise sunset in winter. (See Where do Birds Sleep at Night?)

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