Pictures and Observations
I am very fortunate in that I live in the countryside where we have little or no light pollution. This means that when the moon is full (or nearly full) we get this amazing light and when the moon is new we see the stars and boy are there a lot of them. Yesterday was a beautiful day here and I managed to take pictures of the moon at several points during the day and night.
At sunset. 15:10. Moon 96% full.
As you can see the moon is very bright even at this time of day.
This picture was taken from our downstairs window. The moon is in the north east part of the sky.
This next picture is taken at the same time of day but from an upstairs window.
I couldn't believe how bright the moon was at this time of day. It was pretty amazing.
This picture was taken an hour later at 16:10. Moon is now at 97% full. As you can see it is very very bright. This picture is taken without the flash which is what is causing the double moon. So incredibly bright.
This final image is taken at 23:20 with the moon at 98% full. The moon is now pretty much dead on in the south and the picture is taken from a third floor window where I had to lean out and up. At this point it was so bright I could easily have gone for a walk in the woods and been able to see things. Absolutely amazing. I tried capturing it in a picture but there just wasn't enough light to be able to do that.
About the Luna Phases
The lunar phases are caused by the angle of the moon to the earth and the sun. Depending on where in the orbit these bodies are we seen different parts of the moon. The time between the different phases of the moon is on average 29 days 12 hours and 44 minutes. This does vary at times however due to the moons elliptical orbit.
Myths of the Moon
The lunar phases of the moon has been subject to many myths and superstitions over the centuries. For example it is said that when the moon is full the werewolfs come out. It was also thought that the moon and magical powers or that it was made of cheese. Today we know that the moon does affect for example the tide.
Moon at its Perigee
Today when the moon is full it will also be at its closest point to the earth in its orbit and therefore this is the biggest the moon will be this year. This is called the moon being at perigee. Two stories about this phenomena one from NASA and one from MSNBC. Both links provide more information about the moon and different space missions. So if it is clear where you are today go out and look at the moon.