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Why is the Moon so BIG tonight? Stargazers prepare for dazzling Moon

The stargazers are on a verge these days staring on the Beaver’s moon aka Frost moon this November. They believe that this time the moon is going to be large than usual in appearance. They are up with the news that the Full Moon will appear early before the sunrise on November 23, where most of Britain would be asleep.

Astronomers expect that the lunar orbital would reach its Full Moon at 5.39 am GMT. Once it appears, the sunlit face of the Big Moon would be 100% enlightened making the earthshine with its bright glow.

But if you take some time out of your busy routine and watch the sky high, you will notice that the moon is already large and floodlit. This is all because of the Waxing Gibbous Moon which is glowing with its 97% ability to shine.

Image: GETTY

Being a casual observer, you will see the full moon a day or two before the Full Moon appears. But if you are accompanied by a powerful telescope, good enough to hone in the Earth, then you could easily differentiate between the Full and the Waxing Moon.

The Reason behind the big moon

When the moon orbits around the Earth and around the space, half of its face faces the sun (sun face lit) and the other faces our planet. But when the moon revolves or barrels around the sun, the amount of sunlight that bounces off the moon is different every night. According to the NASA, Moon has no light of its own. The light that bounces off the sunlight is actually the moonlight. As the moon barrels around the earth, the sun enlightens the side of the moon facing towards it. For the sun, the moon is always a Full Moon.

We see the moon from the center of its orbit in which it resides, therefore it appears as distinct phases of the moon. Such phases are known as lunar phases.

Four Phases of the moon

  1. New moon
  2. First Quarter Moon
  3. Full Moon
  4. Third Quarter Moon

The lunar cycle is of 28-29 days and it always initiates from and ends to the new moon. The full moon is mid of the complete cycle. During this time, the moon resides behind our planet and faces the sun.

Image: NASA

As believed by NASA, the bright portion of the moon changes their shape during the month and each change is referred to a phase and each one of it is entitled to a different name.

After that, the Third Quarter Phase of the moon appears where the left side of the moon is illuminated.

The lunar orbital disappears, and a new moon appears on every 7 of December.

Fatima Sheikh

I write about Space Science, latest tech and whatever else piques my interest.

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