January 19, 2011

Learning about the Full Moon

Seeing as today is a full moon, you may be wondering about the nature of a full moon and its characteristics. Especially for those new to astronomy or learning about it in school, looking at the different phases of the moon through a telescope or with the naked eye can help visualize where objects are in relation to others. There are resources available to find out when the next full moon will be based on calculations, and Woodland Hills Camera & Telescopes has an online calendar of celestial events that you can see.

What is a full moon?

Full moon is the phase of the moon that appears when the sun and moon are on opposite sides of the Earth. When you look at the moon from the Earth, what you see is that the moon appears to be “full” or completely round. This happens because the moon reflects the light of the sun that is shining onto it. It is also at this time that the opposite side of the moon, away from the Earth, is not illuminated (and thus we hear about the “dark side of the moon”). Depending on where in the sky the moon is when you see it, you may be able to see the southern craters through your telescope. To learn more about the moon or other cosmic events, be sure to look at the calendar linked to above from Woodland Hills Camera & Telescopes.

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