February Moon at Perigee

   Our Moon reaches perigee, (closest distance from Earth), for this orbit on Monday January 1st. At that time the Moon will be at a distance of 28.8 Earth diameters (363,832 km or 226,074 miles) from the Earth making this full Moon the year’s Super Moon.
   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 the day of the perigee Moon the 27-day old waxing gibbous Moon is above the eastern horizon about 1 hour after sunset local time. The Moon is located between the stars Procyon in Canis Minor and Regulus in Leo the Lion.

   *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?”


Click here to go to the Qué tal in the Current Skies web site for monthly observing information, or here to go to bobs-spaces.

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