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NJ Night Sky: Solstice and a Christmas moon

Though we wouldn’t know it from a comfortable continue we’ve been having, a initial day of winter is imminent. The winter solstice will start during 11:48 p.m. Monday.

At this point, a object is during a lowest indicate in a sky. It rises in a southeast and, during a top indicate in a south, it is usually about 25 degrees above a horizon. This low altitude creates for a brief day and a object sets fast in a southwest.

The object has been relocating southward by a summer and into a fall. Now that a object has reached a southernmost position, it seems to postponement in motion. This is where a word “solstice” comes from: It originated from a Latin ”solstitium” or “sun stoppage.”

After this day, a object is solemnly relocating northward. Although a continue might get colder, a days will be removing longer and a object sets later. A month from now, nightfall will be 30 mins later.

 

A CHRISTMAS MOON

More than 1,000 images taken by NASA’s Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter (LRO) were stitched together in 2010 to make this fantastic mosaic of a moon.  

The full moon of Dec is famous as a Cold Moon, or a Long Nights Moon to Native Americans. This year, we could call it a Christmas Moon — as it is full on Dec. 25 during 6:11 a.m.

This hasn’t happened given 1977 and won’t occur again until 2034. This might seem like an surprising event, though it is due to a Metonic Cycle.

In a 5th century B.C., a Greek astronomer Meton of Athens beheld that 235 full moons equal roughly accurately 19 years. So you’d design a full moon on Christmas Day each 19 years. However, in 1996, given a Metonic cycle is a integrate hours brief of 19 years, a full moon fell on Dec. 24.

You can watch a moon arise during 4:20 p.m. on Christmas Eve. It is in a sky all night and sets during 7:05 a.m. Christmas morning.


Kevin D. Conod is a planetarium manager and astronomer during the 
Newark Museum’s Dreyfuss Planetarium. For updates on a night sky, call a Newark Skyline during (973) 596-6529.

Article source: http://www.nj.com/inside-jersey/index.ssf/2015/12/nj_night_sky_solstice_and_a_christmas_moon.html

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