Mumbai will witness a ‘Zero Shadow Day’ (ZSD) between May 15 and 16.
Arvind Paranjpye, Director of Nehru Planetarium explained, that the ‘Zero Shadow’ only occurs for a few minutes and will be experienced in several cities of Maharashtra between May 6 upto May 20. It occurs exactly half-way between sunrise and sunset.
“The event can only be experienced by people living between the Tropic of Cancer and the Tropic of Capricorn on a particular day and at a particular time when the sun is exactly overhead resulting in disappearance of shadow for a few minutes,” Paranjpye said. He also added that only cities south of Bhuj upto Kolkata can witness this.
Paranjpye also suggested that the best way to observe this phenomenon was to either stand or place a vertical object in the sun close to noon and one could observe that slowly the shadow diminished and eventually disappears for a while only to reappear later.
“As per our mathematical calculations, people from South Mumbai, North Mumbai, Navi Mumbai can witness the No Shadow Day on May 15 and May 16 from around 12:34pm to 12:36 pm,” he said. Adding that there was a conscious attempt to popularise such occurrences to draw people’s interest towards astronomy, especially children.
Though this phenomenon occurs twice every year and Mumbai will get to witness it again on July 27, experts state that summers are the best season to witness ZSD. July being rainy season and the conditions being cloudy there is always a lesser chance of witnessing your shadow disappear.