Saturday, June 22, 2013

OMG, the Super Moon!

Ok, so right now Facebook is full of people posting pictures of the moon.

Yes, it is a super moon.

No, you can't tell just by looking at it.

A super moon happens when a full moon coincides with the time when the moon makes its closest pass to the earth. Tonight the moon does appear larger. But by how much?

Answer: Not much. In fact, you really can't tell just by looking at it.

So why does it look so big in this picture I just took?

Well, the truth is you're actually seeing what is known as the moon illusion - the moon looks larger on the horizon than it does high in the sky. So, you heard that tonight was a Super Moon, ran outside to see it on the horizon and sure enough, it does look big!

Sorry to be the downer once again, but it's the moon illusion that you're seeing. However, as far as cool science goes, the moon illusion is pretty cool as well.