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10/27/2022 – Ephemeris – Trying to spot the young Moon tonight

October 27, 2022

This is Bob Moler with Ephemeris for Thursday, October 27th. Today the Sun will be up for 10 hours and 24 minutes, setting at 6:38, and it will rise tomorrow at 8:15. The Moon, 2 days past new, will set at 7:55 this evening.

The Moon is again making its appearance in the evening sky as a thin crescent. The crescent appearance is because the moon is mostly between the Earth and the Sun. So we are seeing mostly its night side, with just a sliver of it being sunlit. But the Moon has the Earth in its sky, which is quite big and bright, much brighter than the Moon in our skies. And when the Moon’s phase is thin, the Earth, having the opposite phase, will be a nearly full gibbous orb. The Earth illuminates the Moon’s night side with earthlight. We call it earthshine, when the whole Moon appears faintly inside the crescent. It’s also known more poetically as the “Old moon in the new moon’s arms.” If you’re not sure, because the effect is faint, check it out in binoculars. The effect should last another night.

The astronomical event times given are for the Traverse City/Interlochen area of Michigan (EDT, UT – 4 hours). They may be different for your location.

Addendum

Earthshine by Bob Moler

An old picture of mine overexposing the crescent Moon to bring out earthshine. The moon was a wider crescent than it will appear to be tonight.

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