Astronomy and astrology are different. One difference … astrological signs of the tropical zodiac remain fixed relative to seasonal markers, such as the equinox and solstice points on the sky’s dome. Meanwhile, the constellations of the zodiac (and signs of the sidereal zodiac) slowly but surely shift eastward relative to the equinox and solstice points, over the long course of time, due to a motion of Earth called precession.
Also, signs of both the tropical and sidereal zodiac represent equal 30 degree divisions whereas the constellations of the zodiac vary in size.
In a celestial coordinate system commonly used by astronomers and astrologers, the sun resides at the First Point of Aries on the March equinox (0 degrees of longitude on the ecliptic), regardless of the fact that the sun shines in front of the constellation Pisces on the March equinox in our day and age.
We provide the dates for the sun’s entry into each sign of the tropical zodiac (and corresponding ecliptic longitude) for the year 2020.
Dec 22, 2019: Sun enters sign Capricorn (270 degrees)
Jan 20, 2020: Sun enters sign Aquarius (300 degrees)
Feb 19, 2020: Sun enters sign Pisces (330 degrees)
Mar 20, 2020: Sun enters sign Aries (0 degrees)
April 19, 2020: Sun enters sign Taurus (30 degrees)
May 20, 2020: Sun enters sign Gemini (60 degrees)
June 20, 2020: Sun enters sign Cancer (90 degrees)
July 22, 2020: Sun enters sign Leo (120 degrees)
Aug 22, 2020: Sun enters sign Virgo (150 degrees)
Sep 22, 2020: Sun enters sign Libra (180 degrees)
Oct 22, 2020: Sun enters sign Scorpio (210 degrees)
Nov 21, 2020: Sun enters sign Sagittarius (240 degrees)
Dec 21, 2020: Sun enters sign Capricorn (270 degrees)
Source: Timetable of astronomical events by Guy Ottewell
Visit theplanetstoday.com to know which sign presently backdrops the sun.
Want a quick comparison of these dates with the dates of the sun’s entry into astronomical constellations? Click here. Or check out the chart below, which Guy Ottewell posted to his blog in early 2016 and is still valid for 2020. Used with permission.
Bottom line: Dates for the sun’s entry into each sign of the zodiac (and corresponding ecliptic longitude) for the year 2020.
Bruce McClure has served as lead writer for EarthSky's popular Tonight pages since 2004. He's a sundial aficionado, whose love for the heavens has taken him to Lake Titicaca in Bolivia and sailing in the North Atlantic, where he earned his celestial navigation certificate through the School of Ocean Sailing and Navigation. He also writes and hosts public astronomy programs and planetarium programs in and around his home in upstate New York.