When does Mexico's autumnal equinox take place in 2022 and what is it?

Beginning with the autumnal equinox in 2022, we shall enter a time of year defined by ochre tones: When does it happen, and what exactly is it, in Mexico?

When does Mexico's autumnal equinox take place in 2022 and what is it?
Chichén Itza is a popular destination to observe the Autumn Equinox in Mexico. Image by Sára Pračková from Pixabay

Among the different astronomical events in September we find the autumnal equinox 2022, which will welcome an ocher-colored season, but what is it and when does it occur in Mexico?

What is the autumnal equinox 2022?

It is an astronomical phenomenon that happens twice a year when the Sun aligns with the Earth's equator, so the day lasts the same length as the night, explained the National Autonomous University of Mexico (UNAM). According to UNAM, the etymology of equinox comes from the Latin aequus, which means "equal", and noctis, which means "night".

What happens during the autumnal equinox 2022?

With the entrance of the autumnal equinox in 2022, a new season of the year begins, and for this reason, the days become shorter and the nights longer, according to UNAM. In this season there are fewer daylight hours, the temperature drops and the leaves of the trees change color, from green to ocher and when they fall, they cover the streets with brown tones. The typical colors of autumn are because, in this season, trees no longer use chlorophyll, a compound responsible for absorbing the sun's rays and giving a greenish tone to the leaves.

When does the autumnal equinox 2022 occur?

The National Institute of Astrophysics, Optics, and Electronics (INAOE) detailed that the autumnal equinox 2022 will be on Thursday, September 22, at 20:03 hours (Central Time). The equinox marks the beginning of autumn in the northern hemisphere and spring in the southern hemisphere. Moreover, it usually occurs on the same date, September 22; however, the time it takes for the Earth to orbit the sun influences the variation of the day.

"The length of a solar year is not 365 days, as marked by the Gregorian calendar, but 365 days and approximately six hours, which, when multiplied by four, gives 24 hours, that is, an extra day that gives rise to the leap year, which adds a day in February," said the UNAM.