Do you know the difference between latitudes and longitudes

May 16, 2018 18:47 IST
Do you know the difference between latitudes and longitudes

When we travel over desert, sky, or seas, we need two things, first one is direction and second one to fix our position. During ancient times, people use to position themselves with the help of the landmarks and rudimentary map. Today, we describe the location of the places or the position with the help of two terms i.e. latitude and longitude. For example- If we are travelling on the ship then we can only specify our position on a map with the help of latitude and longitude coordinates.

The Eratosthenes (Known as "Father of Geography") in the 3rd century BC first proposed a system of latitude and longitude for a map of the world. By the 2nd century BC Hipparchus was the first to use such a system to uniquely specify places on Earth.

Difference between latitudes and longitudes



It run east to west

It run north to south

There are 181 lines of latitudes

There are 360 lines of latitudes

The largest latitude equator divides the earth into northern hemisphere and southern hemisphere.

The longitude prime meridian divides the earth into eastern hemisphere and western hemisphere.

They are parallel and never meet each other.

They are not parallel and meet at poles.

Do You Know Why International Date Line is not straight?

Important Facts related to the latitude and longitude

1. Both the latitude and longitude are denoted in degrees, minutes, and seconds.

2. The Zero degrees latitude is known as ‘Equator’.

3. The equator passes through 13 countries: Ecuador, Colombia, Brazil, Sao Tome & Principe, Gabon, Republic of the Congo, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Uganda, Kenya, Somalia, Maldives, Indonesia and Kiribati.

4. The Zero degrees longitude is an imaginary line known as the ‘Prime Meridian’.

5. There is a close relationship between time and longitude. The Earth rotates on its axis at a rate of 360 degree per day or we can say 15 per hour. If traveller knew the time at a fixed point when something happen at a particular position. Then the difference between the reference time and the apparent local time will give the traveller's position relative to the fixed point.

6. The distance from the equator to either pole is exactly 6,222 miles, or standard miles (10,013 Km). If we divided by 90° from equator to pole, then it equals to exactly 69 miles (111 Km) for each degree of latitude.

7. 1° of longitude is about the same distance as 1° of latitude at the equator. The longitudes are not parallel to each other, hence meridians do not stay the same distance apart at all places on Earth. As the meridians move away from the equator they come closer and closer together until they finally meet at the poles, which means that the number of miles in 1° of longitude is different to each latitude.

Do you know the distance between a Degree of Latitude and Longitude?