Southern Hemisphere

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The Southern Hemisphere from above the South Pole Southern Hemisphere LamAz.png
The Southern Hemisphere from above the South Pole
The Southern Hemisphere highlighted in yellow. The hemispheres appear to be unequal in this image due to Antarctica not being shown, but in reality are the same size. Global hemispheres.svg
The Southern Hemisphere highlighted in yellow. The hemispheres appear to be unequal in this image due to Antarctica not being shown, but in reality are the same size.

The Southern Hemisphere is the half of Earth that is south of the Equator. It contains all or parts of five continents [1] (Antarctica, Australia, about 90% of South America, a third of Africa, and several islands off the continental mainland of Asia), four oceans (Indian, South Atlantic, Southern, and South Pacific) and most of the Pacific Islands in Oceania. Its surface is 80.9% water, compared with 60.7% water in the case of the Northern Hemisphere, and it contains 32.7% of Earth's land. [2]

Earth Third planet from the Sun in the Solar System

Earth is the third planet from the Sun and the only astronomical object known to harbor life. According to radiometric dating and other sources of evidence, Earth formed over 4.5 billion years ago. Earth's gravity interacts with other objects in space, especially the Sun and the Moon, Earth's only natural satellite. Earth revolves around the Sun in 365.26 days, a period known as an Earth year. During this time, Earth rotates about its axis about 366.26 times.

South one of the four cardinal directions

South is one of the four cardinal directions or compass points. South is the opposite of north and is perpendicular to the east and west.

Equator Intersection of a spheres surface with the plane perpendicular to the spheres axis of rotation and midway between the poles

An equator of a rotating spheroid is its zeroth circle of latitude (parallel). It is the imaginary line on the spheroid, equidistant from its poles, dividing it into northern and southern hemispheres. In other words, it is the intersection of the spheroid with the plane perpendicular to its axis of rotation and midway between its geographical poles.

Contents

Owing to the tilt of Earth's rotation relative to the Sun and the ecliptic plane, summer is from December to March and winter is from June to September. September 22 or 23 is the vernal equinox and March 20 or 21 is the autumnal equinox. The South Pole is in the center of the southern hemispherical region.

Earths rotation rotation of the solid Earth around its own axis

Earth's rotation is the rotation of Planet Earth around its own axis. Earth rotates eastward, in prograde motion. As viewed from the north pole star Polaris, Earth turns counter clockwise.

Sun Star at the centre of the Solar System

The Sun is the star at the center of the Solar System. It is a nearly perfect sphere of hot plasma, with internal convective motion that generates a magnetic field via a dynamo process. It is by far the most important source of energy for life on Earth. Its diameter is about 1.39 million kilometers, or 109 times that of Earth, and its mass is about 330,000 times that of Earth. It accounts for about 99.86% of the total mass of the Solar System. Roughly three quarters of the Sun's mass consists of hydrogen (~73%); the rest is mostly helium (~25%), with much smaller quantities of heavier elements, including oxygen, carbon, neon, and iron.

Ecliptic apparent path of the Sun on the celestial sphere

The ecliptic is the mean plane of the apparent path in the Earth's sky that the Sun follows over the course of one year; it is the basis of the ecliptic coordinate system. This plane of reference is coplanar with Earth's orbit around the Sun. The ecliptic is not normally noticeable from Earth's surface because the planet's rotation carries the observer through the daily cycles of sunrise and sunset, which obscure the Sun's apparent motion against the background of stars during the year.

Characteristics

Southern Hemisphere climates tend to be slightly milder than those at similar latitudes in the Northern Hemisphere, except in the Antarctic which is colder than the Arctic. This is because the Southern Hemisphere has significantly more ocean and much less land; water heats up and cools down more slowly than land. [3] The differences are also attributed to oceanic heat transfer (OHT) and differing extents of greenhouse trapping. [4]

Climate Statistics of weather conditions in a given region over long periods

Climate is the statistics of weather over long periods of time. It is measured by assessing the patterns of variation in temperature, humidity, atmospheric pressure, wind, precipitation, atmospheric particle count and other meteorological variables in a given region over long periods of time. Climate differs from weather, in that weather only describes the short-term conditions of these variables in a given region.

Northern Hemisphere half of Earth that is north of the equator

The Northern Hemisphere is the half of Earth that is north of the Equator. For other planets in the Solar System, north is defined as being in the same celestial hemisphere relative to the invariable plane of the solar system as Earth's North Pole.

Antarctica Polar continent in the Earths southern hemisphere

Antarctica is Earth's southernmost continent. It contains the geographic South Pole and is situated in the Antarctic region of the Southern Hemisphere, almost entirely south of the Antarctic Circle, and is surrounded by the Southern Ocean. At 14,200,000 square kilometres, it is the fifth-largest continent. For comparison, Antarctica is nearly twice the size of Australia. About 98% of Antarctica is covered by ice that averages 1.9 km in thickness, which extends to all but the northernmost reaches of the Antarctic Peninsula.

Aurora australis appearing in the night sky of Swifts Creek, 100 km (62 mi) north of Lakes Entrance, Victoria, Australia Aurora australis panorama.jpg
Aurora australis appearing in the night sky of Swifts Creek, 100 km (62 mi) north of Lakes Entrance, Victoria, Australia
Aurora australis appearing from Stewart Island / Rakiura in the south of New Zealand AuroraAustralisDisplay.jpg
Aurora australis appearing from Stewart Island / Rakiura in the south of New Zealand

In the Southern Hemisphere the sun passes from east to west through the north, although north of the Tropic of Capricorn the mean sun can be directly overhead or due north at midday. The Sun rotating through the north causes an apparent right-left trajectory through the sky unlike the left-right motion of the Sun when seen from the Northern Hemisphere as it passes through the southern sky. Sun-cast shadows turn anticlockwise throughout the day and sundials have the hours increasing in the anticlockwise direction. During solar eclipses viewed from a point to the south of the Tropic of Capricorn, the Moon moves from left to right on the disc of the Sun (see, for example, photos with timings of the solar eclipse of November 13, 2012), while viewed from a point to the north of the Tropic of Cancer (i.e., in the Northern Hemisphere), the Moon moves from right to left during solar eclipses.

Tropic of Capricorn Line of southernmost latitude at which the sun can be directly overhead

The Tropic of Capricorn is the circle of latitude that contains the subsolar point on the December solstice. It is thus the southernmost latitude where the Sun can be directly overhead. Its northern equivalent is the Tropic of Cancer.

Sundial device that tells the time of day by the apparent position of the Sun in the sky

A sundial is a device that tells the time of day when there is sunlight by the apparent position of the Sun in the sky. In the narrowest sense of the word, it consists of a flat plate and a gnomon, which casts a shadow onto the dial. As the Sun appears to move across the sky, the shadow aligns with different hour-lines, which are marked on the dial to indicate the time of day. The style is the time-telling edge of the gnomon, though a single point or nodus may be used. The gnomon casts a broad shadow; the shadow of the style shows the time. The gnomon may be a rod, wire, or elaborately decorated metal casting. The style must be parallel to the axis of the Earth's rotation for the sundial to be accurate throughout the year. The style's angle from horizontal is equal to the sundial's geographical latitude.

Solar eclipse natural phenomenon wherein the Sun is obscured by the Moon

A solar eclipse occurs when an observer passes through the shadow cast by the Moon which fully or partially blocks ("occults") the Sun. This can only happen when the Sun, Moon and Earth are nearly aligned on a straight line in three dimensions (syzygy) during a new moon when the Moon is close to the ecliptic plane. In a total eclipse, the disk of the Sun is fully obscured by the Moon. In partial and annular eclipses, only part of the Sun is obscured.

Cyclones and tropical storms spin clockwise in the Southern Hemisphere (as opposed to anticlockwise in the Northern Hemisphere) due to the Coriolis effect. [5]

The southern temperate zone, a subsection of the Southern Hemisphere, is nearly all oceanic. This zone includes the southern tip of Uruguay and South Africa; the southern half of Chile and Argentina; parts of Australia, going south from Adelaide, and all of New Zealand.

Uruguay republic in South America

Uruguay, officially the Oriental Republic of Uruguay, is a country in the southeastern region of South America. It borders Argentina to its west and Brazil to its north and east, with the Río de la Plata to the south and the Atlantic Ocean to the southeast. Uruguay is home to an estimated 3.44 million people, of whom 1.8 million live in the metropolitan area of its capital and largest city, Montevideo. With an area of approximately 176,000 square kilometres (68,000 sq mi), Uruguay is geographically the second-smallest nation in South America, after Suriname.

South Africa Republic in the southernmost part of Africa

South Africa, officially the Republic of South Africa (RSA), is the southernmost country in Africa. It is bounded to the south by 2,798 kilometres (1,739 mi) of coastline of Southern Africa stretching along the South Atlantic and Indian Oceans; to the north by the neighbouring countries of Namibia, Botswana, and Zimbabwe; and to the east and northeast by Mozambique and Eswatini (Swaziland); and it surrounds the enclaved country of Lesotho. South Africa is the largest country in Southern Africa and the 25th-largest country in the world by land area and, with over 57 million people, is the world's 24th-most populous nation. It is the southernmost country on the mainland of the Old World or the Eastern Hemisphere. About 80 percent of South Africans are of Sub-Saharan African ancestry, divided among a variety of ethnic groups speaking different African languages, nine of which have official status. The remaining population consists of Africa's largest communities of European (White), Asian (Indian), and multiracial (Coloured) ancestry.

Chile Republic in South America

Chile, officially the Republic of Chile, is a South American country occupying a long, narrow strip of land between the Andes to the east and the Pacific Ocean to the west. It borders Peru to the north, Bolivia to the northeast, Argentina to the east, and the Drake Passage in the far south. Chilean territory includes the Pacific islands of Juan Fernández, Salas y Gómez, Desventuradas, and Easter Island in Oceania. Chile also claims about 1,250,000 square kilometres (480,000 sq mi) of Antarctica, although all claims are suspended under the Antarctic Treaty.

The Sagittarius constellation that includes the galactic centre is a southern constellation and this, combined with clearer skies, makes for excellent viewing of the night sky from the Southern Hemisphere with brighter and more numerous stars.

Forests in the Southern Hemisphere have special features which set them apart from those in the Northern Hemisphere. Both Chile and Australia share, for example, unique beech species or Nothofagus , and New Zealand has members of the closely related genera Lophozonia and Fuscospora. The eucalyptus is native to Australia but is now also planted in Southern Africa and Latin America for pulp production and, increasingly, biofuel uses.

Demographics and human geography

A photo of Earth from Apollo 17 (Blue Marble) originally had the south pole at the top; however, it was turned upside-down to fit the traditional perspective Apollo17WorldReversed.jpg
A photo of Earth from Apollo 17 (Blue Marble) originally had the south pole at the top; however, it was turned upside-down to fit the traditional perspective

Approximately 800 million humans live in the Southern Hemisphere, representing only 10–12% of the total global human population of 7.3 billion. [6] [7] Of those 800 million people, 200 million live in Brazil, the largest country by land area in the Southern Hemisphere, while 141 million live on the island of Java, the most populous island in the world. The most populous nation in the Southern Hemisphere is Indonesia, with 261 million people (roughly 30 million of whom live north of the equator on the northern portions of the islands of Sumatra, Borneo and Sulawesi, while the rest of the population lives in the Southern Hemisphere). Portuguese is the most spoken language in the Southern Hemisphere, [8] followed by Spanish and Javanese.

The largest metropolitan areas in the Southern Hemisphere are São Paulo (21 million people), Jakarta (18 million people), Buenos Aires (12 million people), Rio de Janeiro (11 million people), Kinshasa (11 million people) and Sydney (6 million) . The most important financial and commercial centers in the Southern Hemisphere are São Paulo, where the Bovespa Index is headquartered, along with Sydney, home to the Australian Securities Exchange, Johannesburg, home to the Johannesburg Stock Exchange and Buenos Aires, headquarters of the Buenos Aires Stock Exchange, the oldest stock market in the Southern Hemisphere.

Among the most developed nations in the Southern Hemisphere are Australia, with a nominal GDP per capita of US$51,850 and a Human Development Index of 0.939, the second highest in the world as of 2016. New Zealand is also well developed, with a nominal GDP per capita of US$38,385 and a Human Development Index of 0.915, putting it at #13 in the world in 2016. The least developed nations in the Southern Hemisphere cluster in Africa and Oceania, with Burundi and Mozambique at the lowest ends of the Human Development Index, at 0.404 (#184 in the world) and 0.418 (#181 in the world) respectively. The nominal GDP per capitas of these two countries don't go above US$550 per capita, a tiny fraction of the incomes enjoyed by Australians and New Zealanders.

The most widespread religions in the Southern Hemisphere are Christianity in South America, southern Africa and Australia/New Zealand, followed by Islam in most of the islands of Indonesia and in parts of southeastern Africa, and Hinduism, which is mostly concentrated on the island of Bali and neighboring islands.

The oldest continuously inhabited city in the Southern Hemisphere is Bogor, in western Java, which was founded in 669 CE. Ancient texts from the Hindu kingdoms prevalent in the area definitively record 669 CE as the year when Bogor was founded. However, there is some evidence that Zanzibar, an ancient port with around 200,000 inhabitants on the coast of Tanzania, may be older than Bogor. A Greco-Roman text written between 1 CE and 100 CE, the Periplus of the Erythraean Sea, mentioned the island of Menuthias (Ancient Greek: Μενουθιάς) as a trading port on the east African coast, which is probably the small island of Unguja on which Zanzibar is located. The oldest monumental civilizations in the Southern Hemisphere are the Norte Chico civilization and Casma–Sechin culture from the northern coast of Peru. These civilizations built cities, pyramids and plazas in the coastal river valleys of Northern Peru with some ruins dated back to 3600 BCE.

List of continents and countries

Continents and microcontinents

Countries and territories

Africa
Entirely
Mostly
Partially
Asia
Entirely
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Partially


Australia
Entirely


South America
Entirely
Mostly
Partially
Indian Ocean
Entirely


South Atlantic Ocean
Entirely


Southern Ocean
Entirely
South Pacific Ocean
Entirely
Mostly

Related Research Articles

Indian Ocean The ocean between Africa, Asia, Australia and Antarctica (or the Southern Ocean)

The Indian Ocean is the third largest of the world's oceanic divisions, covering 70,560,000 km2 (27,240,000 sq mi). It is bounded by Asia on the north, on the west by Africa, on the east by Australia, and on the south by the Southern Ocean or, depending on definition, by Antarctica.

Geography of Nigeria

Nigeria is a country in West Africa. Nigeria shares land borders with the Republic of Benin in the west, Chad and Cameroon in the east, and Niger in the north. Its coast lies on the Gulf of Guinea in the south and it borders Lake Chad to the northeast. Noted geographical features in Nigeria include the Adamawa highlands, Mambilla Plateau, Jos Plateau, Obudu Plateau, the Niger River, River Benue and Niger Delta.

Rainfall and the tropical climate dominate the tropical rain belt, which oscillates from the northern to the southern tropics over the course of the year, roughly following the solar equator. The tropical rain belt is an area of active rain that is positioned mostly around the tropics. According to the website Journey North, the reason the rain belt is situated near the tropics can be attributed to the fact that most of the sun’s radiation is directed toward the equator, which is located in the middle of the tropics. This solar radiation generates large amounts of heat near the equator providing tropical regions with higher temperatures than most other regions on Earth.

Nuclear-weapon-free zone 1950s political concept

A nuclear-weapons-free zone (NWFZ) is defined by the United Nations as an agreement which a group of states has freely established by treaty or convention that bans the use, development, or deployment of nuclear weapons in a given area, that has mechanisms of verification and control to enforce its obligations, and that is recognized as such by the General Assembly of the United Nations. NWFZs have a similar purpose to, but are distinct from, the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons to which most countries including five nuclear weapons states are party. Another term, nuclear-free zone, often means an area which has banned both nuclear power and nuclear weapons, and sometimes nuclear waste and nuclear propulsion, and usually does not mean a UN-acknowledged international treaty.

Geographical zone Major regions of the Earths surface demarcated by latitude

The five main latitude regions of the Earth's surface comprise geographical zones, divided by the major circles of latitude. The differences between them relate to climate. They are as follows:

  1. The North frigid zone, between the Arctic Circle 66.5° N and the North Pole 90° N. Covers 4.12% of Earth's surface.
  2. The North temperate zone, between the Tropic of Cancer 23.5° N and the Arctic Circle 66.5° N. Covers 25.99% of Earth's surface.
  3. The Torrid zone, between the Tropic of Cancer 23.5° N and the Tropic of Capricorn 23.5° S. Covers 39.78% of Earth's surface.
  4. The South temperate zone, between the Tropic of Capricorn 23.5° S and the Antarctic Circle 66.5° S. Covers 25.99% of Earth's surface.
  5. The South frigid zone, from Antarctic Circle 66.5° S and the South Pole 90° S. Covers 4.12% of Earth's surface.
Sun path

Sun path, sometimes also called day arc, refers to the daily and seasonal arc-like path that the Sun appears to follow across the sky as the Earth rotates and orbits the Sun. The Sun's path affects the length of daytime experienced and amount of daylight received along a certain latitude during a given season.

Solar eclipse of July 11, 2010

The total solar eclipse of July 11, 2010, occurred over the southern Pacific Ocean. A solar eclipse occurs when the Moon passes between Earth and the Sun, thereby totally or partly obscuring the image of the Sun for a viewer on Earth. A total solar eclipse occurs when the Moon's apparent diameter is larger than the Sun's, blocking all direct sunlight, turning day into darkness. Totality occurs in a narrow path across Earth's surface, with the partial solar eclipse visible over a surrounding region thousands of kilometres wide.

Solar eclipse of November 13, 2012 total solar eclipse took place on 13–14 November 2012

A total solar eclipse took place on 13–14 November 2012 (UTC). Because it crossed the International Date Line it began in local time on November 14 west of the date line over northern Australia, and ended in local time on November 13 east of the date line near the west coast of South America. Its greatest magnitude was 1.0500, occurring only 12 hours before perigee, with greatest eclipse totality lasting just over four minutes. A solar eclipse occurs when the Moon passes between Earth and the Sun, thereby totally or partly obscuring the image of the Sun for a viewer on Earth. A total solar eclipse occurs when the Moon's apparent diameter is larger than the Sun's, blocking all direct sunlight, turning day into darkness. Totality occurs in a narrow path across Earth's surface, with the partial solar eclipse visible over a surrounding region thousands of kilometres wide.

Solar eclipse of March 13, 1812

A partial solar eclipse occurred on March 13, 1812. A solar eclipse occurs when the Moon passes between Earth and the Sun, thereby totally or partly obscuring the image of the Sun for a viewer on Earth. A partial solar eclipse occurs in the polar regions of the Earth when the center of the Moon's shadow misses the Earth.

Solar eclipse of January 11, 1842

A annular solar eclipse occurred on January 11, 1842 during summer. A solar eclipse occurs when the Moon passes between Earth and the Sun, thereby totally or partly obscuring the image of the Sun for a viewer on Earth. An annular solar eclipse occurs when the Moon's apparent diameter is smaller than the Sun's, blocking most of the Sun's light and causing the Sun to look like an annulus (ring). An annular eclipse appears as a partial eclipse over a region of the Earth thousands of kilometres wide.

Solar eclipse of August 12, 1673

A total solar eclipse occurred on August 12, 1673. A solar eclipse occurs when the Moon passes between Earth and the Sun, thereby totally or partly obscuring the image of the Sun for a viewer on Earth. A total solar eclipse occurs when the Moon's apparent diameter is larger than the Sun's, blocking all direct sunlight, turning day into darkness. Totality occurs in a narrow path across Earth's surface, with the partial solar eclipse visible over a surrounding region thousands of kilometres wide.

Solar eclipse of January 21, 1852

A partial solar eclipse occurred on January 21, 1852 during summer. A solar eclipse occurs when the Moon passes between Earth and the Sun, thereby totally or partly obscuring the image of the Sun for a viewer on Earth. A partial solar eclipse occurs in the polar regions of the Earth when the center of the Moon's shadow misses the Earth.

Solar eclipse of November 9, 1855

A partial solar eclipse occurred on November 9, 1855 during spring. A solar eclipse occurs when the Moon passes between Earth and the Sun, thereby totally or partly obscuring the image of the Sun for a viewer on Earth. A partial solar eclipse occurs in the polar regions of the Earth when the center of the Moon's shadow misses the Earth. It was the eighth solar saros 150 cycle of eclipses

Solar eclipse of June 27, 1862

A partial solar eclipse occurred on June 27, 1862 during winter. A solar eclipse occurs when the Moon passes between Earth and the Sun, thereby totally or partly obscuring the image of the Sun for a viewer on Earth. A partial solar eclipse occurs in the polar regions of the Earth when the center of the Moon's shadow misses the Earth. As is shown over 92% obscuration, the center of the Moon's shadow was missed by about 250 km (150 mi) above the Antarctic Circle.

Solar eclipse of November 21, 1881

An annular solar eclipse occurred on November 21, 1881 during spring. A solar eclipse occurs when the Moon passes between Earth and the Sun, thereby totally or partly obscuring the image of the Sun for a viewer on Earth. An annular solar eclipse occurs when the Moon's apparent diameter is smaller than the Sun's, blocking most of the Sun's light and causing the Sun to look like an annulus (ring). An annular eclipse appears as a partial eclipse over a region of the Earth thousands of kilometres wide.

Solar eclipse of July 9, 1888

A partial solar eclipse occurred on July 9, 1888 during winter. A solar eclipse occurs when the Moon passes between Earth and the Sun, thereby totally or partly obscuring the image of the Sun for a viewer on Earth. A partial solar eclipse occurs in the polar regions of the Earth when the center of the Moon's shadow misses the Earth.

Solar eclipse of December 3, 1899

An annular solar eclipse occurred on December 3, 1899, during late spring. A solar eclipse occurs when the Moon passes between Earth and the Sun, thereby totally or partly obscuring the image of the Sun for a viewer on Earth. An annular solar eclipse occurs when the Moon's apparent diameter is smaller than the Sun's, blocking most of the Sun's light and causing the Sun to look like an annulus (ring). An annular eclipse appears as a partial eclipse over a region of the Earth thousands of kilometres wide.

References

  1. "Hemisphere Map". WorldAtlas. Retrieved 13 June 2014.
  2. Life on Earth: A - G.. 1. ABC-CLIO. 2002. p. 528. ISBN   9781576072868 . Retrieved 8 September 2016.
  3. Granite specific heat = 0.79 and water = 4.18 J/g⋅K see Heat capacity#Table_of_specific_heat_capacities.
  4. Kang, Sarah M.; Seager, Richard. "Croll Revisited: Why is the Northern Hemisphere Warmer than the Southern Hemisphere?" (PDF). Columbia University.
  5. "Surface Ocean Currents". National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration . Retrieved 13 June 2014.
  6. "90% Of People Live In The Northern Hemisphere - Business Insider". Business Insider. 4 May 2012. Retrieved 10 November 2015.
  7. "GIC - Article". galegroup.com. Retrieved 10 November 2015.
  8. "Potencial Económico da Língua Portuguesa" (PDF). University of Coimbra.

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