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Sunday, January 31, 2010

 

Blue Moon from Hot Earth

If you though the Full Moon last Staurday night (30 January, 2010) was big, it was. The Moon was the biggest we will see this year, due to the full Moon falling on the night of the Moons closest approach to Earth.

It was also a "Blue" Moon, the second full Moon of the Month. This year, we will have a second "Blue" Moon in March.

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Comments:
Hang on Ian, you are teaching (and confusing) me at the same time!!

Based on yr Friday post, I went out on saturday night, looked up, took some pics and said 'thats pretty' ;-)

But according to the best data I can find the two blue moons would have been in Dec 2009 Dec2 & 31 according to:

http://www.ga.gov.au/geodesy/astro/moonphases/phase2009.jsp

Could it be that you are confusing 'New Years Eve - Dec31' with January 2010?

Even with your suggestions for extended definiton of BLUE (ie two of any interesting phase in the same calendar month) I can't find justification for your claim of a blue moon on Jan 31.
 
Two Words: Universal Time:

DEC. 31 19:13 UT is JAN. 1 5:13 AEST.

The whole UT vs Local time is confusing, and lots of Astronomical events are given as UT, but then you have to remember to convert to you local time (+/- daylight Saving time).

I should do a post on that someday (referring back to the SA Science Communicators thing)
 
Ripper (now if I could only figure out which timezones the dissenting twitter tweets were coming from - I could make myself feel very righteous ;-)

Have updated my post to reflect your added wisdom and my enlarged understanding.

http://mseyfang.edublogs.org/2010/02/01/look-up-its-pretty-accidental-learnings-in-astronomy/
 
Those comments are most likely coming from America (where their local time is UT -5 to UT -10 depending whether they are on the east coast, west coast, Alaska or Hawaii) where the blue Moon is firmly in 2009 for them. Europeans are around UT time locally, but less likely to be righteous.
 
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