Moon

Some stargazers find the moon a nuisance. Its brightness makes it difficult to observe the faint fuzzies we love so much. But observing the moon is an age old tradition and it certainly has its charms, be it a luminous orb that lights up the terrain in front of you or a razor-thin slice with shadows scraping against the crater walls.

We offer an array of tips and tricks for observing our friendliest neighbor. We’ll provide maps to help you locate famous seas, mountains, craters and Apollo landing sites. We’ll even help you glimpse the far side of the moon . . . well the 9% you can see on Earth from time to time. Once you’ve read through each of our articles you’ll be a lunar expert, more familiar with the terrain than Neil Armstrong.

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What Is A Supermoon?

The perpetuation of the supermoon myth is mostly motivated by desire for publicity. But much of what we call the supermoon is just our eyes playing tricks on us.

Full Moon

The Lunar 100

As the moon wanes in the gibbous phase in the nights to come, see if you can find and observe some of 100 of Charles Wood's classic lunar hit list, including craters, basins, mountains, rilles, and domes.

Full Moon

Once in a Blue Moon

We'll see a "blue Moon" next Friday, but what does that mean? From the Middle Ages to the game of Trivial Pursuit, a folklorist explores the origin of the phrase.

The craters Messier and Messier A

Messier on the Moon

Oblique impact resolves the mystery of one of the most bizarre crater pairs on the Moon: Messier and Messier A. Previous explanations for this crater pair ranged from imaginative to fantastical. All were wrong.

The Mysteries of Plato

The crater Plato is one of the superstars for observers of the Moon. It's big, conspicuous with its dark floor ringed by a bright rim, and long a subject of speculation, and controversy.

Mare Nectaris

Rings and Things

Mare Nectaris is the smallest of the circular maria on the Moon; lavas extend only 350 kilometers from shore to shore. But the Nectaris basin is beautifully defined by the spectacular Altai Scarp, which forms the southwestern rim of the basin.