Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Happy Equinox Experiment

Happy Equinox!

Note: If I would have done this experiment right, I would have done it right at high noon, instead I spaced it out did it about 12:15 local time, so the sun was already past its zenith a couple of degrees.

My experiment is simple, have a meter stick vertical and measure its shadow. The tangent of the angle should equal my degrees latitude north.
19 cm/100cm = 0.19
cotangent 19 = 10 degrees, 45 minutes N.

According to Google Earth, our location is actually 8 degrees, 53 minutes N. So the 2 degree error corresponds with the sun being across the zenith a couple of degrees. Also error could have creeped in anywhere, e.g., was the meter stick vertical, were my measures accurate, etc.?

Anyway...just goofing around.

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