A town in Alaska, US, has bid goodbye to the Sun for 2020 and the sun will next rise in the town of Utqiagvik in 2021. Formerly known as Barrow, the sun last set in the town of Utqiagvik on November 19, 2020. The town will next see daylight after a long gap of over 60 days.
Utqiagvik is located on the north of the Arctic Circle. The small town has now entered its annual phase of darkness. This phenomenon is known as polar night and it occurs during winters. The polar night takes place because of the tilt of the axis of the Earth.
According to scientists, the polar night occurs in the northernmost and southernmost regions of the Earth when the night lasts for more than 24 hours. It is to be noted that this unique natural phenomenon occurs only inside the polar circles.
“Polar night is a normal phenomenon that happens every winter for Barrow (Utqiagvik), and any other towns inside the Arctic circle. This tilt makes it so that none of the Sun’s disc is visible above the horizon,” said CNN meteorologist Allison Chinchar.
Chinchar added that though the town has entered the phase of darkness it does not means that the town will be merged in darkness. He noted that most of the daytime hours will go through periods known as civil twilight.
“Think of what the sky looks like just before sunrise, or just after sunset. That is what they see for several hours a day, from now until January 22, when the sun will “officially rise” again,” said Chinchar.
The people of Utqiagvik town experience in summer is the complete opposite when there are 24 hours of daylight.