Harrow, United Kingdom
Qibla = 119 29 E (From True North)

Fajr is defined to be when the light in the sky first appears and spreads horizontally. The Quran tells us:

...and eat and drink until the white streak becomes manifest to you from the dark streak at the crack of dawn (2:187 (Ali Quli Qarai))

In our current living conditions, due to the large amount of light pollution in the cities, it is not possible to notice this effect. For this reason much work has gone into arriving at formulas to calculate the time when this light first appears in the sky. Until recently the best work on the prayer times were carried out by a Malaysian Astro Physicist, Dr Mohammad Ilyas, who made the suggestion, based on large amounts of research, that the time of Fajr should be when the sun is 16° below the horizon. As a cautionary measure, he also suggested taking Imsaak, the time when one should stop eating in order to begin the fast, when the sun is 18° below the horizon. This calculation coincided with numerous observations for Fajr time in locations close to the equator. Dr Ilyas also suggested that there was no reason not to use this calculation for locations further north or south as the reason for Fajr coinciding with the sun being 16° below the horizon should extend to all locations.

As further research has been carried out in countries further from the equator, evidence has been found showing this phenomenon of Fajr being at 16° does not hold. Some of the best research to date has just been completed by the OpenFajr Research group in Birmingham, where a specialised camera was set up to observe the time of Fajr on a daily basis for a period of a year. The research findings have shown that the angle of the sun below the horizon is not a fixed value for the duration of the year, the angle varies depending on the date. Using the data obtained from these images, the OpenFajr group have put together a timetable for the city of Birmingham.

SICM has decided to take the timetable that has been produced for Birmingham and convert that data to make it as close to the actual Fajr times for London as possible. As Birmingham is relatively close to London, it is unlikely for there to be a significant variation between the times. However to calculate the small variation that is present, the difference has been taken between the time for sunrise in Birmingham and London and this value has been subtracted from the OpenFajr group's Fajr time. A further cautionary value of 7 minutes has been subtracted from the time to produce a time for Imsaak and 7 minutes added to the time to produce a time for Fajr. This cautionary period should account for the small error margin present in transposing data from a different location as well as the small cautionary margins put in by the OpenFajr group themselves.

We give thanks to the great work done by the OpenFajr group and the other organisations working on this problem, praying that Allah is pleased with all of our work and forgives us all for our shortcomings.

Note: Ayatullah Seestani says, "The obligatory precaution is that as long as the redness in the eastern sky appearing after sunset has not passed overhead, Maghrib Salaat should not be performed."
Ayatullah Fadhullah says, "Sunset takes effect when the sun's disk disappears from the horizon. Thus one can at such a time say one's Maghrib prayer, and also break his fast if one fasts."
Ayatullah Khui says, "It is ihtiyat wajib to wait until the redness that appears in the eastern horizon after sunset has passed overhead."
Shaykh Sudduq says, "Sunset (Maghrib) is validated by the fall of the sunís disk."
Shaykh Tusi says, "Maghrib starts at the setting of the sun."

Please do not hesitate to contact us if you need more details regarding SICM's timetable.


May Allah guide us on the right path.

Timetable created using programme created by Haider Asaria For postcode HA2: Longitude: -0.357 Latitude: 51.574

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