Wednesday, 15 June 2011

moon phases

moon phases

Tonight sees a Lunar Eclipse occur and will be visible in many places across the globe but what of the phases the moon goes through during it's eclipse? There are 8 different positions the Moon goes through in it's cycle and these will be seen tonight as the moon becomes more and more eclipsed.

The image to the left shows the different positions that it goes through in it's orbit around the earth. In any position, half of the moon is lit up by the sun (the light side of the Moon) and half is not (the dark side). Also, half of the Moon is visible to the Earth (the near side of the Moon) and half is not (the far side). As the Moon moves around the Earth, we can see different portions of the illuminated half of the Moon.

So a real treat tonight for those with a keen liking for astronomy and will be a exquisite sight to behold.

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