Rare full moon on Christmas Day

Rare full moon on Christmas Day
How the moon will appear on Christmas, 2015. Credit: NASA/Goddard/Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter

Not since 1977 has a full moon dawned in the skies on Christmas. But this year, a bright full moon will be an added gift for the holidays.

December's full moon, the last of the year, is called the Full Cold Moon because it occurs during the beginning of winter. The moon's peak this year will occur at 6:11 a.m. EST.

This rare event won't happen again until 2034. That's a long time to wait, so make sure to look up to the skies on Christmas Day.

As you gaze up at the Christmas moon, take note that NASA has a spacecraft currently orbiting Earth's moon. NASA's Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter (LRO) mission has been investigating the since 2009.

"As we look at the moon on such an occasion, it's worth remembering that the moon is more than just a celestial neighbor," said John Keller, NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, Maryland. "The geologic history of the moon and Earth are intimately tied together such that the Earth would be a dramatically different planet without the moon."

LRO has collected a of data with its seven powerful instruments, making an invaluable contribution to our knowledge about the .


Explore further

Blue moon? Friday's celestial event comes with a catch

Citation: Rare full moon on Christmas Day (2015, December 17) retrieved 10 December 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2015-12-rare-full-moon-christmas-day.html
This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only.
4757 shares

Feedback to editors

User comments