Fixing the Shadows While Moving the Gnomon

Alejandro Gangui
2015 The Physics Teacher  
It is a common practice to fix a vertical gnomon and study the moving shadow cast by it. This shows our local solar time and gives us a hint regarding the season in which we perform the observation. The moving shadow can also tell us our latitude with high precision. In this paper we propose to exchange the roles and while keeping the shadows fixed on the ground we will move the gnomon. This lets us understand in a simple way the relevance of the tropical lines of latitude and the behavior of
more » ... d the behavior of shadows in different locations. We then put these ideas into practice using sticks and threads during a solstice on two sites located on opposite sides of the Tropic of Capricorn.
doi:10.1119/1.4914555 fatcat:ddp7fuetmnhf3givx6yd6bi7ka