Why does Alaska have 24 hours of sunlight? 


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Samuel Chiltern Profile
Samuel Chiltern answered
Certain parts of Alaska do experience 24 hours of sunlight at certain times of the year, but this lasts for no more than 85 days a year.

The most northern area of Alaska is known as Arctic Alaska.

The city of Barrow is the northern-most city in Alaska, and the ninth most-northern city in the world.

The sun never sets in June, which gives 24 hours of sunlight every day. Between November and January, the Sun never rises for a total of 67 days, however.

Arctic Alaska and Never-Ending Days and Nights
It isn't just Alaska that experiences this phenomenon - the entire Arctic Circle (at the northern-most point of the Earth) is affected too, including: Canada, Russia, Greenland, Finland, Norway and Sweden.

The reason this happens is to do with the way that the Earth tilts on its axis at an angle of approximately 23 degrees. This means that, as the Earth moves in its orbit around the Sun, the North Pole at the tip of the axis moves from facing the Sun, to facing away from it.

Therefore, the Arctic Circle shifts between being exposed to sunlight all day long during summer, to being placed in the dark for the entire day during winter.

The North Pole at top of the Earth is facing the Sun for six months of the year (this is known as a polar day). For the rest of the year, it is facing away (otherwise known as a polar night). This means that the sun sets and rises only once every year at the polar extreme.

As you move away from the polar extreme, this effect becomes less pronounced, which is why Alaska doesn't have to endure six-month-long days!
Anonymous Profile
Anonymous answered
Alaska has 24 hours of sunlight because it is North and the sun is hitting it there.

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