Autumnal Equinox 2020

John Williams

21 Sep 2020

In 2020, the Autumnal Equinox in the Northern Hemisphere takes place at 14:30 (UK time) on Tuesday, 22 September.

The Autumnal Equinox north of the Equator is mirrored south of the Equator by the Spring Equinox. The word comes from the Latin aequus, meaning “equal”, and nox, meaning “night.”

During the equinox, the Sun crosses what we call the “celestial equator”. Imagine a line that marks the Earth’s Equator extending up into the sky above the Equator from north to south.

After the Autumnal Equinox the days get shorter and the nights longer. In astrology, this is the date on which the Sun enters the sign of Libra, the scales, reflecting appropriately the balanced day and night of the equinox.

Satellite disruptions

In the days before and after an equinox, satellites are vulnerable to “Sun outage” disruptions.

During an equinox, the Sun is aligned directly behind satellites in geostationary orbit at the Equator and satellites are flooded with direct solar radiation.

Many communications satellites orbit around the Equator and the solar radiation they experience can interfere with and even stop them transmitting signals. Thus, consumers may experience slow internet connections or frozen television screens during equinoctial Sun outages.

Three fun ways to celebrate the Autumnal Equinox

photo credit:

  1. Making homemade fresh pumpkin pie.
  2. Watercolour and Autumn Leaf Art Project for Kids - Use autumn leaves and watercolour paintings to create beautiful autumnal art.
  3. Starbucks Pumpkin Spice Latté - This epic autumnal favourite starts with signature espresso and milk. The base ingredients are then highlighted by flavour notes of pumpkin, cinnamon, nutmeg and clove to create this incredible viral beverage. If you want to go all-in, you can get it topped with whipped cream and real pumpkin pie spices.

Spiritual significance

According to Elaine Voci PhD Spirituality & Health: “The annual Autumnal Equinox helps us honour the beauty of the balance between day and night, between activities and restful times, between productivity and contemplation, and it encourages us to give thanks for our life’s bountiful harvest.”