May Perigee Moon

6may-perigee_moon   The Moon reaches perigee, (minimum distance from Earth), this month on Friday May 6th. At that time the Moon will more or less be at a distance of 28.05 Earth diameters (357,827 km or 222,343 miles) from the Earth.
   Does our Moon actually go around the Earth as this graphic shows? 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*

   
   
   On Friday the 6th the Moon reaches its new phase about 15.5 hours after was at perigee allowing this new Moon to be one of the closer new Moons this year.
At the new phase the Moon rises with the Sun and sets with Sun.
   
   
   
   
   
   
   *Click here to read my 2006 Scope on the Sky column “The Real Shape of the Moon’s Orbit”. (PDF)

   Read this very informative article about the Earth-Moon system and their orbital motions, written by Joe Hanson. “Do We Orbit the Moon?”

   
   
   
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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