September Moon

Whats happening in the night sky this September, might surprise some of you Southern on...

The Night Sky for September 2010: A Stargazer's Observing Guide

Aug 17, 2010 Kelly Whitt

Moonrise over Four Peaks Mountain - Lisa Langell

The planets clustered in the west succumb to twilight as Jupiter begins its reign of the night. September also brings the equinox and the Harvest Moon.

The long hours of summer daylight are hastening to an end. The effect is more extreme the farther north an observer is. For someone in Miami, Florida, the sun rises at 7:01 a.m. and sets at 7:40 p.m. on September 1, and by September 30, the sun rises at 7:13 a.m. and sets at 7:09 p.m. This amounts to only a 12 minute difference of daylight in the morning and a 31 minute difference in the evening. But for a location such as Minneapolis, Minnesota, the sun rises at 6:36 a.m. and sets at 7:50 p.m. on September 1 and by September 30 the sun rises at 7:10 a.m. (a 34 minute difference) and sets at 6:55 p.m. (a 55 minute difference).

The September Equinox and the Harvest Moon
In the Northern Hemisphere, the September Equinox brings the first day of fall. On the equinox, the sun rises directly in the east and sets directly in the west. The exact moment of equinox for 2010 is September 22, 11:09 p.m. EDT. For locations farther east than the east coast of the United States, the equinox will occur after midnight and therefore autumn begins in these locations one day later, on September 23.

September 23 is also the date of the Harvest Moon, the full moon for the month. The precise moment of full moon is at 5:17 a.m. EDT. Most people first notice the full moon as it rises in the east around sunset. On September 22, the full moon will rise at 99.6% lit, as it moves into full phase, and by moonrise on September 23, the date of the full moon, the moon will actually be farther past its peak of full phase and only appear at 99.4% lit. However, each night the moon will be so full it will seem as if there are two full moons at sunset in September.

Read more at Suite101: The Night Sky for September 2010: A Stargazer's Observing Guide

1 comment:

SurfDog said...

It sure was beautiful early in the a.m. these past two mornings!

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