Posts Tagged ‘perigee’


Why was I looking up?

May 7, 2012

On May 5 the full moon achieved it closest approach to the earth at midnight.  This has been called a super moon and is explained here.

I drove to a high spot with an unobstructed view and gazed toward what was (I hoped) east.  And  soon a ghostly white and very large full moon rose up from the horizon.  I was surprised at how fast the moon rose – actually a function of how fast the earth is spinning.  It was pretty impressive.  I was not as impressed by my photos of the event, so I found the one above which is better.

I actually went outside later that night (3:00 am) and the moon was so bright that it made the trees cast very distinct shadows on the ground.

I read that the tides are higher at these times, as well, but living on Lake Erie with a tidal range of inches, it did not make much difference.

Here are the figures: the distance between the Moon and the Earth varies from around 356,400 km (at perigee) to 406,700 km (at apogee.)

My photos: