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Q: Tilt of Earths axis ( Answered 5 out of 5 stars,   1 Comment )
Subject: Tilt of Earths axis
Category: Science > Astronomy
Asked by: reba24-ga
List Price: $2.00
Posted: 06 Jul 2005 22:35 PDT
Expires: 05 Aug 2005 22:35 PDT
Question ID: 540809
What would happen to the earths climate if the tilt of the earth
decreased or increased?
Subject: Re: Tilt of Earths axis
Answered By: nenna-ga on 07 Jul 2005 07:17 PDT
Rated:5 out of 5 stars
Good morning reba24-ga and thank you for the science lesson ?  I am
happy to provide you with the following information in answer to your
question. ?What would happen to the earth?s climate if the tilt of the
earth decreased or increased??

The tilt of the Earth is responsible for our yearly cycle of seasonal
weather changes. Two factors change during the course of a year to
give us seasonal variations in temperatures:

    1.	The angle at which sunlight enters the atmosphere and hits the ground.

    2.	The number of daylight hours. 

ANGLE:  If sunlight enters the atmosphere at a direct angle, as it
does in the Northern Hemisphere during the summer, it will go through
less of the atmosphere. Sunlight entering the atmosphere at the
Southern hemisphere at this time has to pass through more of the
atmosphere. Over time, the angle of Earth's tilt varies between 22.2
and 24.5 degrees.  A larger tilt means that the summer hemisphere will
receive more solar radiation, while the winter hemisphere will receive

DAYLIGHT HOURS:   The Sun appears lower in the sky during winter, when
the hemisphere affected is tilted away from it. This decreases the
number of hours for the sun to heat the ground and lower temperatures

If you DECREASED the tilt of the earth to 0 degrees, no seasons would
occur as neither factor above will vary with time.

If you INCREASED the angle of the earth, seasonal variations will
become more extreme, with very hot summers and very cold winters as
both angle of sunlight entry and number of sunlit hours vary much more
between summers and winters.
For example, a fifty-degree tilt would send the sun overhead at the
poles and melt the Ice caps. Resultant changes in sea level would
submerge much of our coastal land.

Even with the reasonably steady range in the Earth?s tilt (23.5
degrees is the present tilt angle), serious changes, such as the Ice
Ages, have been blamed on it

"In the past million years, the Earth experienced a major ice age
about every 100,000 years. Scientists have several theories to explain
this glacial cycle, but new research suggests the primary driving
force is all in how the planet leans..."

Source:  Live Science
( )

Another example of how the Earth?s tilt effects climate is the Sahara
Desert.  The Sahara Desert was once a lush jungle until a change in
the axial tilt turned it into the dry, burning wasteland it is today.

Source:  How the Sahara Became a Desert
( )

Here is an interesting article re: the earth?s tilt and how it
affected climate 3.8 to 2.5 billion years ago

( )

If this answer requires further explanation, please request
clarification before rating it, and I'll be happy to look into this

Google Answers Researcher

Additional Sources:

Earth?s Climate

Live Science
( )
( )

Google Search Terms:

Earth Climate Tilt
( :// )
reba24-ga rated this answer:5 out of 5 stars
thankyou, your answer really helped my understanding of the reasons for the seasons.

Subject: Re: Tilt of Earths axis
From: nenna-ga on 07 Jul 2005 12:43 PDT
Thank you for the rating!  If you need anything else, please let me
know and I will do my best to help you!


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