Khalil is a longtime freelance writer who loves writing about science and debunking conspiracy theories.
Debunking the Flat Earth Myth
A new conspiracy has spread around the globe. The flat Earth movement proclaims that the ancient Greeks, the Mayans, and Galileo were all wrong. Apparently, Earth is indeed as flat as a pancake. Before the internet, this belief was rare, but now, thanks to social media, the flat Earth movement is catching steam.
At first, I didn't pay attention to it, but more and more people keep asking me about it. Amazingly, I find that I cannot ignore it. So, as a spherical Earth believer, these are some of the best arguments I use to prove that the Earth is indeed round.
Best Arguments That the Earth Is Spherical
- Pictures of the moon from the Southern and the Northern hemispheres
- Measurements of long bridges
- You can see two sunsets from the top of the tallest buildings
- Orbits of television satellites
- Long-range unguided missiles
1. Pictures of the Moon From the Southern and the Northern Hemispheres
How can the moon prove that the Earth is round? It's simple. If you look at the video above, you'll see two pictures of the moon's surface taken from two different locations. One is from the Northern hemisphere (U.K.), and the other is from the Southern hemisphere (Australia).
As you can see, the two pictures are each other's reverse. They are upside down from each other. This is because the Earth is a sphere, and people in the Southern hemisphere watch the sky upside down from those in the Northern hemisphere. If the Earth was flat, then the Moon would look the same no matter where you were.
2. Measurements of Long Bridges
If you measure a long bridge, you'll notice slight differences that prove that the Earth is spherical. If the earth was flat, then whether you measured the pillars of a long bridge (such as the Verrazano-Narrows bridge in Washington) from base to base or from top to top, the distance between the two pillars would be the same length. But, since the Earth is round, the two distances are not the same. In fact, you will find that measuring from top to top is longer than measuring from base to base.
In the picture of the Verrazano-Narrows bridge (as shown above), when measuring with a theodolite (a geodesic and optical instrument used for precise measurements), the distance between the two pillars from top to top is about four centimeters longer than the distance from base to base. To achieve this result, the bridge must be more than 1.2 miles in length.
3. You Can See Two Sunsets From the Top of the Tallest Buildings
While it might seem impossible to see two sunsets in a day, if you were traveling up the Burj Khalifa skyscraper in Dubai, you'd be able to do just that. After watching the first sunset at the bottom of the building, you could travel up to the top of the skyscraper and watch the sunset all over again. If the Earth was flat, this would be impossible. But since the Earth is spherical, the light bends—meaning that if you travel to a higher altitude, you can still see the light rays fading into the horizon.
4. Orbits of Television Satellites
TV satellites also prove that the Earth is round. Whether attempting to pass mountains, seas, or deserts, TV signals sent from transmission towers can't travel to faraway places. If the Earth was flat, the signals would be stronger. So what's happening? Well, since the Earth is curved, the signals travel upwards and are lost to the sky after traveling a short distance.
To solve this problem, engineers created satellites that receive the mother signal from the transmitter station. These satellites spread the signal around to larger areas of the Earth, which they can only do by orbiting the Earth. That said, one satellite cannot cover the whole planet. That's because the Earth is spherical, limiting the spread of the signal. This is why you can't receive European TV channels if you are living in the U.S.
5. Long-Range Missiles
Long-range missile engineers need to address the problem of the Earth's curvature when they design missiles. If the Earth was flat, these missiles would miss their targets. The instruments that help these missiles hit their targets (radars and military satellites) also depend on the Earth being round. If the Earth was flat, these missiles would have to take completely different flight patterns.
This content reflects the personal opinions of the author. It is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and should not be substituted for impartial fact or advice in legal, political, or personal matters.