Sunday, May 13, 2012

Another super-moon comes and goes

Last weekend was another super-moon, meaning the full moon phase occurred close to the point of the moon's perigee (closest point to Earth in the moon's monthly orbit). This happens almost every year where full moon occurs about a day from perigee, but during last week's super-moon, perigee and the full-moon phase were one minute apart. I enjoy the novelty, but the appearance of last week's super-moon is similar to any other super-moon, at least as examined with my photography.

These photos compare the super-moon to the moon one and two days away from perigee.
The apparent size difference above is due mostly to the change in phase. In the following image, I carefully traced the perimeters of each photograph with a circle.

Then I centered and top-aligned my circles:

The thicker line at the bottom shows the difference in size between this super moon occurring near perigee and other super-moons occurring a day or two from perigee. This difference is barely detectable with my method.
So, if you missed the May 5 super-moon, you didn't miss anything other than the novelty of the timing of full moon and perigee being 1 minute apart. 


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