This weekend you need to pay attention to the moon. Today, it will be a full moon, as it is once month, but this time it’s special. The moon will be closer to the Earth than it has been in nearly twenty years. Normally, the moon is 240,000 miles away, but now it will be less than 220,000 miles away – more than a 20,000 mile difference! This means that the moon will appear bigger, brighter and extra amazing looking. Please check it out. This is a special experience I’m sure you don’t want to miss. I’m so ridiculously excited. I’ve been counting down the days all week.
I’m taking an astronomy class in school for my last science credit and it is the most mind blowing class ever. Every day I walk out of there speechless, wow-ing over our universe and asking the big questions about space. This week we’ve been studying the moon.
The moon controls the tides, which is a duh, but without it our tides would be so huge they would devastate and destroy the Earth.
The moon controls the Earth’s axis tilt, allowing us to have a mostly consistent and predictable climate. Without the tilt being controlled, the Earth would tilt in crazy angles causing the North and South Pole to be tropical and the equator to freeze, then it would tilt back to “normal” again. Nothing would be able to adapt so fast so nothing would survive.
Did you know without the moon the Earth had 4 hour days – 2 hour sunshine and 2 hour night? The moon’s gravitational pull on the Earth slows the rotation of the Earth down, which allows us the longer days. This also calms the wind down. Without it, nothing would grow tall, but rather short and stout creatures and plants would evolve, because they would be the only things that could survive.
Basically, our moon is actually more special than I’ve ever realized, and it’s only thanks to our moon that we even exist.
We’ve all enjoyed the presence of the big glowing rock in the sky sometime in our lives. We’ve noticed the changes it makes as it revolves around us. We’ve even wondered what else is out there. It’s triggered imagination, inspiration and hope. Today, be thankful that you’re here. Thank the moon for existing and allowing us to live in its company.For more information on our closest celestial neighbor, check out 10 Surprising Moon Facts presented by Space.com