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24 January, 12:20

Imagine that last night you saw the star betelgeuse just starting to rise on your eastern horizon at 7:15 pm. at 7:15 pm tonight, will betelgeuse be above, below, or exactly on your eastern horizon?

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  1. 24 January, 12:39
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    The Earth orbits around the sun toward the east. Since it takes about 365 days to complete 360 degrees around the sun, the Earth moves about 1 degree each day. In order for us to see Betelgeuse on the eastern horizon the next day, the Earth would only need to rotate 359 degrees. This 359-degree rotation plus the 1 degree motion around the sun would be 360 degrees. So we would look at about 7:11 pm, because it takes the Earth about 4 minutes to rotate 1 degree. Therefore, at 7:15 pm the next night, Betelgeuse will be a little above the eastern horizon.
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