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Starlight 1

Why is it Moon questions?

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1.  When the moon first comes up, why does it look squashed and stretched?

2.  The moon is 2% smaller when it first comes up than it is when it is high in the sky, ?

3.  If we are looking through 14.4% more air looking straight out than we are straight up, why is this?

 4. Why is it called the first quarter moon, when it really looks like half a moon?

 5. Why does the sun shadow looks straight across the moon, you would think being a sphere you would see a small curvacue?

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Starlight.

I am not sure if your questions are tongue in cheek so I wont be over serious in my response.

1. Atmospheric conditions and the bending of light contribute to the optical illusion.

2. The Moon is always the same size.

3. Not sure what you mean, maybe your taller than me :laugh:

4. The quarter refers to a sphere and not a flat disc, a full Moon is only half of the whole. or maybe it has just had something to eat.

5. Again not sure what you mean.

Hope this helps :laugh:

Edited by Pig
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I was watching the lunar eclipse yesterday and 3 commentators were discussing these points, but none came up with an answer as to why.  So I thought I would ask to see if I could get answers.

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A quarter moon is only a quarter through its monthly cycle - new, ¼, full (½), ¾...

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In agreement with Pig:

1, Refraction through the atmosphere which is not a nice flat block of air.

2, Same as 1, the angle through the atmosphere makes the size look different.

3, Looking up you are looking up through say 100km of air, when looking out horizontally you are looking at an angle. Draw it then it makes sense.

4, Probably refers to the full cycle new moon (none visible), half moon, full moon, half moon (other half), back to new moon. 4 steps so quarters.

5, It is only "straight at the half moon phases, that is 2 out of about 29 days. So it is not a straight line. Also a straight line is a curved line, just the radius is infinity.

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5. it only looks straight when the sun is at 90 degrees to the moon as seen from earth. A ball and torch will display this nicely in a dimmed room

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3. The Moon looks bigger near horizon is just an illusion, if you measure the size of Moon with high magnification eyepiece, it'll be exactly the same size as it's higher up.

5. Just as Auspom has explained, the half moon is NOT cause by the earth coming inbetween the Sun and the Moon, that's Moon eclipse.

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