Image of the day

Captured by
Robert Gendler


My Account

New to Astromart?

Register an account...

Need Help?

The Next 15 Full Moons

Started by curtrenz, 03/20/2008 10:48AM
Posted 03/20/2008 10:48AM Opening Post
Big bright Full Moons are especially fascinating for all of us. Amazingly, due to light and shadow effects, a Full Moon is actually twelve times brighter than a Half Moon (first/last quarter position).

The Moon will next be its fullest during midday on March 21st for those in the Americas. That means that tonight (March 20/21) and tomorrow evening will bring us Moons that are essentially full. A Full Moon is opposite the Sun in the sky, rising at sunset, crossing the local meridian at local midnight, and setting at sunrise.

It’s not mere imagination that some months a Full Moon appears larger than at other times. And their altitudes at transit can vary considerably over the course of a year and the 18.6-year nodal cycle.

I’ve created a graphic with data that demonstrates the variability of the next fifteen Full Moons. At the top are the changing declinations which affect the Moon’s altitude at meridian transit. Across the center are seen the relative distances between the Earth and Moon. At the bottom can be seen the changes in the Moon’s apparent angular size due to changes in distance. The graphic can be seen by clicking:

For astronomical graphics, including
monthly wallpaper calendar, visit:

Curt Renz