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The big moon illusion

4 May 2014, 00:00 UTC
The big moon illusion
(200 words excerpt, click title or image to see full post)

When the moon looks bigger as it rises or sets, it's easy to think the air is magnifying the image. But it's not. The big moon is just an illusion. You don't have to take my word for it. You can dispel the illusion yourself. Continue reading →

¡SkyCaramba! Weekly astronomy blog for the week ending May 10, 2014
When the moon looks bigger as it rises or sets than when it’s overhead, it’s easy to think the air is magnifying the image. But it’s not. The big moon is just an illusion.
Find something you can hold at arm’s length in the moon’s direction so you can compare them side by side. It should be something of a fixed shape and size so you can use it again when the moon’s in a different place.
It doesn’t matter where the moon is, what phase it’s in, or if it’s day or night. You’ll see it’s always almost exactly the same apparent size! Even over the span of a month, when the moon’s distance changes a lot.
You can take pictures of the moon in two or more positions. Be sure to use all the same settings so you get ...

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