THE GLOBE

THE GLOBE

globe

The globe is a man-made model of places on the earth. It shows the actual shape, direction and area of the land, seas and oceans.

Our earth is made up of both land and water. The large bodies of water are called oceans. There are five oceans in all. The Pacific Ocean is the biggest ocean. The Arctic, is the smallest ocean. Atlantic, Indian and Antarctic are the other three oceans. The large land masses on the surface of the earth are called Continents. There are seven continents on the earth. They are- Asia, Africa, North America, South America, Europe, Antarctica and Australia. Asia is the biggest continent and Australia is the smallest continent. Antarctica is also called the White Continent, because it is completely frozen throughout the year. It is the coldest and lonliest landmass on the earth.

The two end points of the globe are – North Pole and South Pole. The northern most point is the North Pole and Southern most point is called the South Pole. The north pole lies in the middle of the frozen sea while the south pole lies in the middle of the Antarctica. The imaginary line which lies exactly in the middle of the two poles is called equator.

The equator is the largest possible circle which can be drawn around the earth. It divides the earth into two equal halves called the Northern Hemisphere and the Southern Hemisphere. Most of the land is in the Northern Hemisphere while the Southern Hemisphere is covered mostly by the oceans. The Northern Hemisphere is called the Land Hemisphere and Southern Hemisphere is called the Water Hemisphere.

LATITUDES AND LONGITUDES

latitude Longitude

If we look at the globe, carefully, we can see two sets of lines. One set of lines running from east to west is called Latitudes. These are also called Parallels of Latitudes. The other set of lines from north pole to south pole are called Longitudes or Meridians of Longitudes.

Lat Long

LATITUDES

The Latitudes are full circles round the earth and are located at equal distances. They always run parallel to the equator and never meet each other. The equator is the zero degree latitude and it is the largest parallel. The latitudes are 181 in number-90 in the north and 90 on the south of the equator plus the equator itself.

They are labelled as N or S. Some important parallels of latitudes are:

  1. Tropic of Cancer

It is an important parallel of latitude in the Northern hemisphere and is located at the distance of 23½ N from the equator.

  1. Tropic of Capricorn

It is an important latitude in the Southern hemisphere. It lies at a distance of 23½ S from the equator.

  1. Arctic Circle

Arctic Circle lies in the Northern hemisphere at a distance of 66½ N from the equator.

Equator:

It is the zero (0) Latitude which is the longest parallel. It divides the earth into two equal halves-Northern Hemisphere and Southern Hemisphere.

LONGITUDES

Longitudes are semicircles running through the poles. They are not parallel. All these meridians are of the same length. They meet at the poles and intersect at the parallel of latitudes. They are 360 in number – 180 on the west and 180 on the east of the chief meridian which is called the prime meridian (0) or Greenwich Meridian. The prime meridian divides the earth into two equal halves -the Eastern Hemisphere and the Western Hemisphere.

The distance between the lines of longitudes is maximum at the equator and goes on decreasing as we go near the poles. All the longitudes to the east of Greenwich are marked as ‘E’ and to the west of Greenwich are marked as ‘W’. The prime meridian is used to calculate the International Standard Time. For this reason, it is also called the International Date Line.

GRID

The Latitudes and Longitudes help to locate places. When they intersect each other, the Grid is formed. If we know the grid of any place it can be located easily on a globe or a map.