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Phases Of The Moon Definition

Moon phases are the portion of the moon that we can see from Earth on any given night. These depend on where the moon is in its orbit around the Earth.

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Moon & Its Phases

Fun Facts

  • The moon never changes its shape, parts of it are just not visible without sunlight reflecting off of it.
  • A full moon is when the moon's Earth-facing side is fully illuminated (it does not generate its own light).
  • The moon's orbit around Earth causes its phases to repeat every 28 days.

Why Do We Need To Know About Phases Of The Moon

Learning about the moon’s phases helps us know more about ocean tides and why it’s important to predict them for sea-related activities. The moon’s pull on Earth changes with its phases, affecting when tides are high or low. This is important for people like marine biologists, sailors, and fishermen because it helps them with things like sailing, fishing, and looking after coastal areas. It shows how the moon affects Earth.

Studying the moon has helped in fields like space engineering, studying rocks (geology), and searching for life on other planets. The Apollo space missions, which taught us a lot about the moon, have helped us learn more about space, find resources, and consider if there’s life on other planets. This is important for jobs in space exploration, studying planets, and learning about life in space.

Frequently Asked Questions

What causes the moon to look like it is changing shape?
As the moon orbits the earth, the sun always shines on half of it, but from Earth we may only see part of that illuminated surface. The phase we see depends on where the moon is in its orbit around the Earth.
Where does the light of the moon come from?
The moon is lit by the sun. It is important to remember that the moon does not make its own light, it only reflects light from the sun.
What makes the moon and sun look like they are the same size?
The moon is smaller than the sun but it is also 400 times closer. That makes it seem like it is the same size as the sun.
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