Observing the Moon
The Moons seems such an obvious object but there is much to be observed, with just your mark 1 eyeball try observing the different phases, the order they occur and the time of day best to observe them. Look for the highlands and seas and see if you can spot the wobble of the moon (libration).
However if you have a telescope try observing the Lunar 100, or imaging the Moon’s features.
Neutral Density (ND) filters to remove the glare
Fringe Killer to remove any colour cast from refractor telescopes.
IR Pass filter to improve the seeing.
Several CMHASD members were out on the 29th September 2023 to image the final Supermoon of 2023 and below are their images. This full Moon is also known as the Harvest Moon as it is the closest Full Moon to the September equinox this year.
Most years, the Harvest Moon is in September but around every three years it’s in October. When the Harvest Moon occurs in September it replaces the Corn Moon. When it happens in October it takes the place of the Hunters Moon.
Kevin Smith’s image taken from Deal, Kent.
Honor Wheeler’s images taken from Dartford, Kent.
Dominique Ferrand’s image taken from Cordoba, Spain. Dominique’s image is of the full Moon and Jupiter.
For more information: https://www.timeanddate.com/astronomy/moon/harvest.html
A fantastic image of a Full Moon, a Supermoon and finally a Blue Moon all captured by member Jim Burchell on the 30th August 2023 from Dartford top road in Kent. WOW!!!!
The combination of a Blue Moon and Super Moon is very rare, so this was a very rare chance to see what is known as a Super Blue Moon. The last one was back in 2009 and we will have to wait until 2037 to see it again.
A blue Moon happens when the pattern of days in a year means there are 13 full Moons instead of the usual 12 and so one month has 2 full moons. This year the month of August had 2 full Moons.
Anyone hoping to seen the Moon tinged the colour blue would have been disappointed. The name of the Moon has nothing to do with colour but instead is so called because it does not fall in the usual scheme of named Moons. It is thought that the rarity is where the phrase “once in a blue Moon” may come from. The last blue Moon was in August 2021 and the next one will be in 2026.
This blue Moon is also known as a supermoon too and so appeared larger and brighter than usual in the sky. This was due to the fact that the Moon was near it’s closest point in its orbit around the Earth.
Finally, the 30th Aug 2023 full moon was the biggest and brightest Super Moon of the year as this year there are 4 Supermoons!
For more information click on this link https://moon.nasa.gov/news/197/super-blue-moons-your-questions-answered/
Superb image of a daytime Waning Gibbous Moon (60% illumination) taken on the 7th Aug 2023 by CMHASD trustee & member Simon Dawes.
A lovely image of the Moon and Jupiter taken by member Diane Clarke.
Diane wrote ” Jupiter & the Moon 4° apart. I went to image this event as it rose above my local horizon, but the sky was cloudy so I decided to wait as both Jupiter & the Moon would need to clear a local stand of trees. Fortunately, after they cleared the trees the sky broke giving me the opportunity to take an image of the event.
Image taken: 01.10.23 @22.33 hrs BST. Camera: Canon EOS M50m2. Lens: Canon EF L 100 – 400mm @ 160mm, F-stop f/5.6 @ 1/320 sec and ISO 800.”
A great image of the crescent Moon (with Earthshine) and Jupiter taken on the 14th June 2023 with a Pentax KP 300mm by member Jim Burchell.
A fantastic collection of images showing the Full Moon also known as the Buck Moon rising on the 3rd July 2023 by member Jim Burchell in the constellation of Sagittarius. All images were taken with a Pentax KP. It was also the 1st Supermoon of 2023.
The full Moon in July is called a Buck Moon after the new antlers that begin to grow from the forehead of a buck (male) deer at this time of year. They shed their antlers in the early spring or late winter, growing full again in July.
This Buck Moon is the first of four Supermoons that will rise this summer 2023 culminating with September’s Full Corn Moon on September 28th.
The Moon orbits the Earth in an elliptical shape rather than in a circle, so its distance to us (Earth) varies over time; so there are times in the Moon’s orbit when it is closer to the Earth and other times when it is further away. A Supermoon is a phenomenon that occurs when a full Moon takes place at the same time as the perigee; when the Moon is closest to the Earth.
A Supermoon is actually classified when a full Moon is closer than 360,000km to the Earth. This distance is around 21,000km closer than the Moon’s average distance from us of around 384,400km.
The Old Farmer’s Almanac which has published astronomical data for many centuries, says the Buck Moon would orbit closer to the Earth than any of the full Moons we have already had this year.
The end of August’s full Moon will be the only supermoon closer to the Earth this year, the publication said.
Below are Jim’s photos…..
Note that 2024 will have four full Supermoons in a row too. They will occur on August 19, September 18, October 17 and November 15.
Look towards the West after sunset for a splendid view of Venus and the crescent Moon over the next few evenings.
Members Jim Burchell and Gary Hunt did yesterday evening the 21st May 2023 and captured these great images of a young crescent Moon with Venus.
Moon & Venus by Jim Burchell
Moon & Venus by Gary Hunt
A lovely photo of a young Moon in the constellation Taurus taken by CMHASD trustee John Howarth on the 20th May 2023.
A collection of beautiful images of our Sun setting and a full Moon rising on the 5th May 2023 taken by members Jim Burchell & Honor Wheeler.
Sun with Sunspot setting by Honor
Sunset by Jim
”The Full Moon of May is known as Flower Moon to signify the flowers that bloom during this month. Native Americans called it Budding Moon, Egg Laying Moon, and Planting Moon.
The Anglo-Saxon name for May’s brightest Moon phase is Milk Moon from the Old English Rimilcemona. It means three-milkings-month in modern English because cows were milked three times a day during this time of year. The Celtic and Old English names are Mothers’ Moon, Bright Moon, Hare Moon, and Grass Moon.” ref:https://www.timeanddate.com/astronomy/moon/flower.html
Flower Moon on 5th May by Honor
FLower Moon rising by Jim
A lovely image of a waxing gibbous Moon taken on the 29th April 2023 by member Neil Webster.
To see a higher resolution photo of Neil’s image – check out his flickr page at https://www.flickr.com/photos/137388222@N05/52861969736/.
Two lovely images of a crescent Moon, with Earthshine and Venus taken by member Jim Burchell on the 24th March 2023. The first image has the ISS in it too!
A selection of super images of the Full Moon taken on the 7th March 2023.
”In March, the Full Moon is the Worm Moon. It is also called Lenten Moon, Crow Moon, Crust Moon, Chaste Moon, Sugar Moon, and Sap Moon. The Worm Moon gets its name from the earthworms that come out when the soil warms up. The worms provide food for birds and other animals. It happens around the changing of the seasons, from astronomical winter to spring in the Northern Hemisphere.” ref https://www.timeanddate.com/astronomy/moon/worm.html
This stunning very atmospheric image of the Full Worm Moon was taken by member Jim Burchell.
The next 3 beautiful images showing the Full Worm Moon rising were taken by member Honor Wheeler. Honor said ”Full Moonrise was not easy to capture tonight. The Moon barely escaped the cloud but got a few pics nonetheless.” and yes she did 🙂
Member Jim Burchell was busy out and about towards the end of February photographing our stunning sky and below is a selection of his superb images.
Orion, Taurus and the Pleiades taken on the 23rd Feb from the CMHASD pavilion, Sutton-at-Hone.
Image was taken with a Pentax KP on a static tripod, F6.3, 30 sec, 18 MM and iso 800.
Crescent Moon on the 24th Feb.
The Sun taken on the 24th Feb.
NEVER LOOK AT THE SUN DIRECTLY. Please see our Solar Observing safety page at crayfordmanorastro.com/solar-safety/
Crescent Moon with Jupiter & Venus on the 25th Feb.
On the 5th February 2023, member Jim Burchell captured this absolutely beautiful image of the full moon also known as the Snow Moon. Jim took the photo using a Pentax KP, 300 mm, F7.1 1/25 sec and iso 400.
Processed in Photoshop.
Three wonderful images of our Moon acquired by CMHASD member Honor Wheeler back in December 2022. The 1st image was taken on the 29th Dec 2022 and the next two on the 26th Dec 2022, all from North Kent.
Honor acquired her super image below of what looks like a ‘Half Moon’ at 20221229_2103UT by using a Canon M6 Mark II, 102mm Refractor, EQ3 synscan mount, x2 Barlow and ISO400, exp1/320s.
The next image below of a beautiful crescent Moon was acquired by Honor at 20221226_1654UT using a Canon M6 Mark II, 102mm Refractor, EQ3 synscan mount, x2 Barlow and ISO200, exp1/30s
Honor’s 3rd image below showing a stunning amount of Earthshine was acquired at 20221226_1737UT using a Canon M6 Mark II, 102mm Refractor, EQ3 synscan mount, x2 Barlow and ISO400, exp4s. For more information about Earthshine click here.
Being up early on dark mornings has its rewards as member Jim Burchell shows here with these super images of a crescent Moon on the morning of the 18th January 2023. The amount of ‘Earthshine’ captured in the 1st photo by Jim is stunning. Also in the photo – bottom left, is the star Alniyat in Scorpius.
”Earthshine is a dull glow which lights up the unlit part of the Moon because the Sun’s light reflects off the Earth’s surface and back onto the Moon. It is also sometimes called ashen glow, the old Moon in the new Moon’s arms, or the Da Vinci glow, after Leonardo da Vinci, who explained the phenomenon for the first time in recorded history…… Earthshine is best seen a few days before and after a New Moon, right after sunset or before sunrise. Scientists studying global warming found that earthshine is more intense in April and May” ref: https://www.timeanddate.com/astronomy/earthshine.html
Crescent Moon & Earthshine with Alniyat in Scopius by Jim Burchell
The 2nd image below shows more detail of the crescent Moon.
Another stunning image of the Moon taken by member Neil Webster on the 2nd January 2023. The image is of a waxing Gibbous Moon at 85.0% and 10.39 days old. The image is a mosaic made up of 6 frames stitched in Microsoft ICE.
Below is one of the frames taken by Neil which he said was his favourite!
You can see a higher resolution image on Neil’s flickr page at https://www.flickr.com/photos/137388222@N05/52602589747/
Member Richard Bohner captured these superb detailed images of the crescent Moon on the 27th Dec 2022 from Arizona, USA. Amazing how much detail has been acquired using an iPhone camera held up to an eyepiece 🙂
All images are copyright. Permission must be sought to from the image owner to the use of any of these images.