Latitude and longitude! When describing a specific location using geographical terms, you most probably will use two terms, the latitude and the longitude. With them sounding very similar, it’s no wonder that these are often confused and thought to mean something that they don’t. Read on to be sure that you always use the correct terms when you want to specify the coordinates of a certain place.
Latitude and Longitude
The LATITUDE is the term that describes how far south or north from the equator the location is, while the LONGITUDE is used to describe how far east or west it is located from an imaginary line that connects the North and the South Poles.
Latitudes are lines that are parallel to the equator, and this is why they are also called parallels. Longitudes, on the other hand, are also called meridians.
If two locations have the same latitude, this automatically means that they surely are in the same hemisphere, be it the northern or the southern. With the same longitude, however, you can’t be so sure because two locations might be in different hemispheres of the Earth but still be on the same meridian.
What the same longitude means, however, is that the locations are in the same timezone. This isn’t something that happens with locations that have the same latitude.
The similarity between longitudes and latitudes is that they are measured in the same way: in degrees, minutes, and seconds, where one degree has 60 minutes and one minute has 60 seconds. A longitude can take values from 0 to 180, and these can be positive if they are located east and negative if they are located west of the Prime Meridian. Alternatively, the letters E and W specify the direction.
A latitude takes values from 0 to 90, with the Equator being 0, positive 90 being the North Pole, and negative 90 being the South Pole. Instead of positive and negative values, the letters N and S can be used.
What do we need latitudes and longitudes for? The simple answer is that latitudes help us divide the Earth according to different temperature zones, while longitudes classify different locations according to timezones.
Latitude vs. Longitude Examples
- The latitude of the island is 20 degrees south.
- Our position is latitude 32 degrees north.
- This city is close to the fortieth parallel of north latitude.
- The British Isles lie between latitude 50’N and latitude 60’N.
- The expansions of conformal latitude in map projection are studied in this paper.
- The town is at longitude 28° west.
- Our position is longitude 116 degrees east.
- All places on the same meridian have the same longitude.
- Local time changes by one hour for every 15 degree longitude.
- The longitude of New York is 74 degrees west of Greenwich.
Difference between Latitude and Longitude | Picture
Latitude and Longitude: Longitude and Latitude Difference