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Moon Observing Lab for ASTRON35 - DE version also OK 2F2F (2).docx

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Lab: Moon Observing – DE VersionPurposeThe goal of this lab is to observe the location and phase of the Moon as it orbits around the Earth.What You Will NeedThe main thing you need for this lab is a few minutes each clear day to look up and observe the Moon. Itdoesn’t need to be the same time each day (in fact, you will need to change the times you observe as theMoon changes its location in its orbit around us). You also don’t need to observe from the same location eachtime so long as you have a general sense of which direction is which (east, west, north, and south) from yourobserving locations.You will also need to get 8 observations spread out overat least two weeks. Murphy's Law rules: astronomersare at the mercy of the weather, and the moment we start our observing project, it is guaranteed to get cloudy,and stay cloudy.Observing the MoonYou will need to start by find the Moon in the sky – you are welcome to look up the times of moonrise andmoonset to that you know when to start observing.Go outside during clear weather and look for the Moon in the sky. If it’s daylight this may be difficult but unlessit’s close to new Moon you should be able to see it. Remember that the Moon rises in the east and sets in thewest just like the Sun, so use the time to moonrise or set to determine roughly which direction to look.You must have at least1 daylight observationon your list, and if you wish, all may be daytime. Theobservations do not all have to be taken at the same time of day or night. Plan your observing so it mesheswith your work and school schedule.In Table I recorddate, time (including am and pm), phase and location.Figure out where the Sun is.Use the time to estimate the Sun's position when it is below the horizon. Youknow that the sun sets in the east and rises in the west. So if it's a little after sunset, then the Sun is a littlebelow the western horizon. If it's a little before sunrise, then the Sun is a little below the eastern horizon. If it isclose to midnight, then the Sun is close to straight down.Estimatetheangle between the Moon and the Sunin degrees. For instance, if the Moon and Sun are onopposite horizons, they are separated by 180 degrees.If one is on the horizon and the other is nearlyoverhead, they are separated by 90 degrees. Remember that this is just an estimate: don't expect to do betterthan about 20 degrees. See the page on estimating the angle below.

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Term
Spring
Professor
N/A
Tags
Moon Orbit Diagram

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