I’ve posted on this before (here), but I still find it fascinating. The Moon takes about 29.5 days to orbit the Earth once. We don’t really pay attention, but it’s constantly (though slowly) moving through our sky. Here are two easy steps to noticing the movement of the Moon: 1, choose a point of reference and 2, observe at the same time two nights in a row.
It was lucky that the Moon was passing by Venus on September 8, 2013. I happen to catch it from my apartment, so I snapped a pic and tweeted it:
— Jesse Rogerson (@jesserogerson) September 9, 2013
The next day, September 9, 2013, I happened to look out my window and see the Moon and Venus again! It being 24 hours later, it was very easy to see that the Moon had moved. So I tweeted the follow up, haha:
— Jesse Rogerson (@jesserogerson) September 10, 2013
By comparing the two photos, you can see just how far the Moon moves in 24 hours! While planets do move, they move a lot slower than our Moon. As a result, we can use Venus’ position as a point of reference to see the motion of the Moon. cool right?
I know the pics aren’t the best. They were taken by my cell phone. I really should invest in a decent camera one of these days. BUT (in my defence), this shows how easy you can do simple astronomy science experiments at home without any expensive equipment.