# Does it take exactly 24 hours for the earth to rotate?

According to Time and Date, the Earth revolves once every 86,400 seconds with regard to the Sun, which equals 24 hours, or one mean solar day. However, due to gravitational forces from other planets and stars, it actually takes 90 minutes longer than this. The additional time is called "lunar orbit".

The Earth's rotation is constant throughout its surface except in areas where it is distorted by movement of the soil or rock, such as at the poles or on an ocean floor. Due to the pull of other planets and stars, the Earth's axis of rotation is not fixed in space; instead, it wobbles back and forth like a spinning top. On account of this wobble, the axis of rotation points towards itself over time. This means that the northern and southern hemispheres are rotated with respect to each other.

Lunar orbit: The distance between the Earth and the Moon varies due to their mutual gravitational attraction and thus so does their relative speed. This speeds up as they get closer and slows down as they get farther apart. If we could see past the Moon's edge, we would find that it takes about 29 days to complete one lunar orbit. This is known as "lunar month" and "lunar year", respectively.

## How long does it take to make a complete rotation?

The Earth revolves once every 24 hours in relation to the Sun, but once every 23 hours, 56 minutes, and 4 seconds in relation to other, distant stars (see below). Because the Earth's rotation slows gradually with time, a day used to be shorter. But since 1803, when James Croll published his work on this subject, no significant change has been observed.

The length of a day is changing, however. The most recent research indicates that the current period of 12 hours is only going to last about 10 million years more before it becomes 11 hours, 55 minutes. This will be enough time for all the water on Earth to evaporate, but not enough for any significant changes in climate to occur.

The effect of solar activity on the earth's rotation is two-fold. First, the sun's magnetic field changes the rate at which electricity flows along the paths of least resistance within the Earth's magnetic environment, thereby causing areas of low pressure to form near its surface. These regions then move around the planet at speeds up to 100 km/h, dragging their contents with them.

Second, dark spots appear periodically on the sun's surface. When these spots rotate into view from our perspective on Earth, they block out part of the sun, causing a temporary reduction in solar energy reaching the Earth.

## Does it take the Earth 24 hours to complete each orbit?

This is due to the Moon's tidal impacts on Earth's rotation. The impact results in both days and months being longer than they would otherwise be.

Another important factor that affects how long a day is is the position of the Earth with respect to the Sun. When the Earth is at its most distant point from the Sun, around July 10th; it takes it 24 hours 48 minutes to circle back toward the Sun. At its closest approach, around January 3rd, it takes only 23 hours, 56 minutes to go around once. The average distance of the Earth from the Sun is about 150 million km (93 million miles), so you might expect it to take a little over 24 hours to circle through this space, but because of the way the Earth's rotation changes throughout the year, the closer it gets, the faster it rotates!

At its farthest point, around March 5th, the Earth takes 25 hours 45 minutes to rotate once. And then, when it is at its nearest point, around September 6th, it takes only 23 hours, 56 minutes to go around again.

##### Audra Jones

Audra Jones has been practicing yoga and spirituality for over 30 years. She has always had a deep interest in the healing practices of ancient cultures and how to apply them today. Audra is skilled at using her intuition and understanding of energy to create sacred spaces that promote healing. Her clients find solace in their sessions with her, as she helps them find peace within themselves through meditation techniques, calming imagery, aromatherapy, sound therapy, essential oils, etc.