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How to Calculate the Phases of the Moon

How to calculate the phases of the moon, It refers to the different views we observe as a result of the reflection of the light the Moon receives from the Sun as it rotates around the Earth. These phases vary depending on the Moon's position in the sky. A calendar or astronomy app is often used to calculate the phases of the moon, as calculating the phases can require some complex mathematical calculations.

However, in order to basically understand the phases of the Moon, it is necessary to know the position of the Moon and how the sunlight falling on the Moon's surface is reflected to the observer. Here are the basic steps:

New month

It is when the Moon is on the same line as the Sun. Sunlight is not directly reflected on the surface of the Moon and the surface of the Moon appears completely dark.

First Quarter

It occurs when the Moon is at right angles to the Earth-Sun line. In this case, half of the Moon receives sunlight while the other half remains dark.

fullmoon

It occurs when the Moon is between the Earth and the Sun. In this case, the entire surface of the Moon is illuminated by the Sun, and when viewed from the Earth, the Moon appears completely illuminated.

Last Quarter

It occurs when the Moon is at the opposite right angle of the Earth-Sun line. In this case, half of the Moon receives sunlight while the other half remains dark.

Other states between moon phases are transitions between the basic states above. During these transits, the combinations of light and dark areas visible on the Moon's surface change.

In practice, it is more convenient to use astronomy applications or calendars to determine the phases of the Moon, because these calculations must be made exactly accurately.

View of the Moon by Date

To understand the Moon's appearance for a specific date, you need to use astronomy apps or online tools. Because the phases of the moon are based on certain mathematical calculations and there may be a different phase on each date. For example, in 2023 phases of the moon on certain dates is as follows:

January 1, 2023: First Quarter

January 9, 2023: Full Moon

January 16, 2023: Last Quarter

January 24, 2023: New Moon

February 1, 2023: First Quarter

February 8, 2023: Full Moon

February 15, 2023: Last Quarter

February 23, 2023: New Moon and so on.

However, for more up-to-date and detailed information, you need to use online astronomy resources or astronomy applications. Presented above is just an example. Such resources can often provide you with the phases and appearance of the Moon on certain dates.

New Moon Phase

New month It is the phase of the Moon seen when viewed from the same line as the Sun in the sky. Therefore, the visible part of the Moon's surface relative to the Earth becomes completely dark, and the visible surface of the Moon becomes almost invisible. During the New Moon phase The surface of the moon is oriented opposite to the part illuminated by the Sun.

When the observer looks at the Earth, the visible surface of the Moon during the New Moon phase is almost completely dark and appears only as a distinct silhouette. This phase is generally considered the beginning of the moon's phase cycle, after which the moon's surface begins to enter an increasing series of phases as it becomes increasingly illuminated by the light it receives from the Sun.

The new moon phase occurs after the moon completes a complete rotation around the Earth. However, due to the angle between the moon and the sun, the New Moon phase does not occur at the end of each rotation, so there may be a gap of several days between New Moon observations.

Swelling Moon Phase

swollen moon It generally refers to the shape of the Moon cut in half in the sky. This phase is located between the First Quarter and Last Quarter phases. The First Quarter represents the increasingly luminous surface of the Moon and therefore its increasingly visible surface, while the Last Quarter represents the decreasingly luminous surface and thus increasingly visible surface of the Moon.

Swelling Moon phase During this period, the part of the moon that is cut in half is illuminated by the sun, while the other half remains dark. This phase, which is often clearly visible when rising or setting in the sky, indicates that the moon illuminates one hemisphere when viewed from Earth and the other hemisphere remains in shadow.

The fact that the swell Moon is located between the First Quarter and the Last Quarter indicates that the Moon has completed half of its phase cycle and is now moving towards the full Moon. As we move towards the full moon phase, we come to a period when the surface of the moon is completely illuminated.

How Many Weeks Do the Phases of the Moon Change?

The phases of the moon It varies around the Earth in a cycle lasting approximately 29,5 days. to this period moon phase cycle It is called. Therefore, the phases of the Moon make a complete cycle approximately every 29,5 days.

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