This week, you may lunch with the Snow Moon, which can seem at its fullest at 11:57 a.m. EST (1657 GMT) on Wednesday, Feb. 16.
If you cannot make this lunar lunch date, the moon will nonetheless be an ideal companion for different outside actions, showing full for 3 days, from Tuesday (Feb. 15) by Thursday night time (Feb. 17), in accordance with NASA.
When you see a vibrant star close to the total moon, that is Regulus, the brightest star within the constellation Leo (the lion) and a harbinger of spring within the Northern Hemisphere, in accordance with NASA and EarthSky.
Throughout the full moon, the moon, Earth and the solar line up, in that order, on an imaginary 180-degree line. The solar’s rays illuminate the aspect of the moon dealing with Earth as a result of the moon’s orbit is about 5 levels off of Earth’s, often placing it barely above or beneath Earth’s shadow. In different phrases, the moon performs peekaboo with the solar, coming out absolutely illuminated practically each month (and typically greater than as soon as a month).
February’s full moon has a number of names, together with the Snow Moon and the Storm Moon, as a result of heavy snowfall in lots of locations this time of yr, in accordance with the Maine Farmers’ Almanac, which printed Native American moon names within the Thirties, NASA reported. Snowy climate and storms made searching difficult, so the Starvation Moon was one other historic Native American identify for February’s moon.
Outdated European names for this moon embrace the Candles Moon, which is tied to the Feb. 2 Christian competition Candlemas, which marks when Mary offered her son Jesus to God as her firstborn, in accordance with Britannica.
In addition to the total moon, skygazers can catch another celestial wonders this week. Usually, the photo voltaic system’s innermost planet, Mercury, is seen solely at dawn or sundown. However at 3:59 p.m. EST (2059 GMT) on Wednesday, individuals with a big sufficient telescope will have the ability to see a half-lit Mercury. This glimpse of the smallest planet is feasible as a result of, about six instances a yr, Mercury swings out to 1 aspect of the solar from Earth’s perspective, in accordance with EarthSky. When Mercury is farthest from the solar, it’s at its “biggest elongation.”
Whether or not you are recognizing the Snow Moon, Regulus or Mercury, be glad that winter is greater than midway by. At 88.99 days, winter is the shortest season; the spring equinox is on March 20, 2022.
Initially printed on Dwell Science.