October Apogee Moon

18oct-apogee    Our Moon orbits around the Sun with the Earth and from our perspective on the Earth the Moon appears to circle around the Earth. However in reality the Moon orbits the Sun together with the Earth*.

Click on graphic to see it full size.

Click on graphic to see it full size.

   This thin 24.5-day old waning crescent Moon shows about 25% of its disk and rises before sunrise local time. The Moon will be easily noticed as it is midway between Jupiter (magnitude -2.0) and the star Regulus (magnitude 1.34). With binoculars look for 3rd magnitude Omicron Leonis to be less than half a degree from the upper cusp of the Moon.
   The waning crescent Moon reaches apogee this month on Saturday October 18th at 1 am CDT (6 UT). At that time the Moon will more or less be at a distance of 31.74 Earth diameters (404,897 km or 251,591 miles) from the Earth.

   *Click here to read my 2006 Scope on the Sky column “The Real Shape of the Moon’s Orbit”. (PDF)

Caution: Objects viewed with an optical aid are further than they appear.
   Click here to go to the Qué tal in the Current Skies web site for more observing information for this month.

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