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The first time I looked at world time on my iPhone, I saw an S-shaped curve superimposed on the world map. That curve showed the demarcation line between day and night.

I didn’t pay much attention to the S-shaped curve, and I gave it no thought until recently. Then I discovered the same S-shape curve on weather satellite imagery of planet earth.

The S-shape curve exists because earth is tilted 23.5 degrees on it’s axis, and the time of sunrise and sunset in your location is dependent on your latitude.

If the earth was not tilted on its axis, the north and south poles would connect in a straight line that was aligned with the parallels of longitude. As the world rotated, the demarcation line between light and darkness would progressively move to the west aligned with a parallel of longitude. Sunset would happen at the same time for everyone along the demarcation line between light and dark regardless of latitude. But that is not what happens.

When you look at satellite images of sunset, the demarcation line between day and night carves an S-shaped pattern across the planet. The 23.5 degree tilt of the planet means that sunrise and sunset happen at different times depending on your latitude.

In summer, the sun sets much later in the day in the northern latitudes than in latitudes close to the equator. If you go to the far northern latitudes, the sun will never set because the 23.5 tilt of earth’s axis keeps those latitudes perpetually in the daylight.

In the winter, the sun sets earlier in the day in the northern latitudes compared to latitudes close to the equator. If you go to the far northern latitudes, the sun will never rise because the tilt of the earth keeps those latitudes in perpetual darkness.

The opposite is true in the Southern Hemisphere.

These facts came home when I examined visible light satellite photos, and I saw the S-shaped curve demarcating night from day.

It was a Eureka moment for me.

Most people learned these facts in grade school, but for me, the facts did not sink in.

You probably learned all this information in grade school, and none of this surprises you.

So I am going to tell you something you do not know.

In Saudi Arabia, Muslims have prayer call five times a day.

The first prayer call happens early in the morning at sunrise. So how do you determine the time of sunrise? It’s easy. Simply lay a white thread and a black thread side by side, and when you can differentiate the black thread from the white, that is the moment of sunrise.

The last prayer call at night happens at sunset. How you determine the time of sunset? Simply lay a white thread and a black thread side by side, and when you can no longer tell the black thread from the white, that is the moment of sunset.

When you consider the S-shape curve that demarcates day from night, it becomes clear that the time of prayer call in the morning and evening will be determined by the worshiper’s latitude, and it will be different for every latitude on planet earth.

The S-shaped curve also determines the time of nautical sunset when you shoot your star sights with celestial navigation. Latitude makes a difference in the time of your star sight.

The S-shaped curve also determines which satellites to use to visualize the weather. Visible imagery can only be done in daylight, and if you want to see clouds after dark, you must use infrared imagery.

So there you have it.

The S-shaped curve demarcating day from night affects our weather, our navigation, and religious practices around the world

That’s all I have to say about that.

Dr. Dave

Captain Dave - David J. Abbott M.D.





Exit Only

See what it's like for a family to sail around the world on a small catamaran

Captain Save Our Souls

Awesome music video that captures the essence of what it's like to sail offshore in a catamaran around the world when conditions are less than perfect. David Abbott from Too Many Drummers sings the vocals, and he also edited the footage from our Red Sea adventures. This is the theme song from the Red Sea Chronicles.

Red Sea Blues

Sailing up the Red Sea is not for the faint of heart. From the Bab al Mandeb to the Suez Canal, adventures and adversity are in abundance. If you take things too seriously, you just might get the Red Sea Blues.

Red Sea Chronicles Trailer

If you like drum beats, and you like adventure, then have a listen to the Red Sea Chronicles Trailer.

Red Sea Chronicles Episode 1 - When Flying Fish Attack

Flying fish assault Exit Only in the middle of the night as we sail through the Arabian Gulf from the Maldives to Oman. And so begins our Red Sea adventures.

Red Sea Chronicles Episode 2 - Pirate Alley

Sailing through Pirate Alley between Yemen and Somalia involves calculated risk. It may not be Russian Roulette, but it is a bit of a worry. Follow Team Maxing Out as they navigate through Pirate Alley.

Red Sea Chronicles Episode 3 - Aden, Yemen

Stopping in Yemen was just what the doctor ordered. We refueled, repaired our alternator, and we made friends with our gracious Yemeni hosts. We also went to Baskins Robbins as a reward for surviving Pirate Alley.

Red Sea Chronicles Episode 4- Gate of Sorrows and Sandstorms

After you survive Pirate Alley, you must sail through the Gate of Sorrows (Bab Al Mandab) at the southern entrance to the Red Sea. The Gate of Sorrows lived up to its name with fifty knots of wind and a sandstorm that pummeled Exit Only for two days. Life is good.

Patreon - Maxing Out

Captain Dave and his family spent eleven years sailing around the world on their Privilege 39 catamaran, Exit Only. During the trip, the crew shot 200 hours of video with professional cameras to show people what it's like to sail on a small boat around the world.

The Red Sea Chronicles is a one hour and twenty-two minute feature film showing their adventures as Exit Only sails through Pirate Alley in the Gulf of Aden and up the Red Sea. The professional footage documents their experiences in Oman, Yemen, Eritrea, Sudan, Egypt, and the Suez Canal. It chronicles the rigors of traveling in a remote section of the world rarely visited by cruisers. Exit Only dodges Yemeni pirates, fights a gale and sand storms in the Bab al Mandeb at the southern entrance to the Red Sea. The crew explores deserted islands on the western shores of the Red Sea, and learns to check the cruising guides for land mines before venturing ashore.

The Red Sea Chronicles also has outstanding Special Features including an Instructional Video on Storm Management that tells sailors how to deal with storms at sea.

And don't forget the two Music Videos: "The Red Sea Blues", and "Captain - Save Our Souls".

The Red Sea Chronicles is a first class adventure that stokes the sailing dreams of both experienced and wannabe sailors alike.


    Team Maxing Out Sails Around The World On Their 39 Foot Catamaran

    Join Team Maxingout as they sail through Pirate Alley and up the Red Sea


    Give your dream machine a shot in the arm

    See what it's like to cruise on a catamaran before you spend a bazillion dollars purchasing one


    View the storm management video to learn how Captain Dave dealt with storms at sea

    After watching the Red Sea Chronicles you will be able to see yourself sailing on the ocean of your dreams

Red Sea Chronicles

Save A Tree Bookstore

Although I like the feel of a paper book in my hand, I love trees even more. When people purchase an eBook, they actually save trees and save money as well. Ebooks are less expensive and have no negative impact on the environment. All of Dr. Dave's books are available at Save A Tree Bookstore. Visit the bookstore today and start putting good things into your mind. It's easy to fill your mind with positive things using eBooks. No matter where you are or what you are doing, you can pull out your smart phone or tablet and start reading. You can even use electronic highlighters and make annotations in your eBooks just like paper books.