Astronomy Picture of the Day

Discover the cosmos! Each day a different image or photograph of our fascinating universe is featured, along with a brief explanation written by a professional astronomer.

2016 June 25
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Strawberry to Honey Moonrise
Image Credit & Copyright: Trevor Mahlmann

Explanation: Near the horizon the Full Moon often seems to loom large, swollen in appearance by the famous Moon illusion. But timelapse images demonstrate that the Moon's apparent size doesn't really change as it climbs toward the zenith. Its color does, though. Recording a frame every 10 seconds, this image shows how dramatic that color change can be. The composite follows a solstice Full Moon climbing above a rugged horizon over northwestern Indiana. A shrinking line-of-sight through planet Earth's dense and dusty atmosphere shifted the moonlight from strawberry red through honey-colored and paler yellowish hues. That change seems appropriate for a northern June Full Moon also known as the Strawberry or Honey Moon.

Tomorrow's picture: from New Horizons

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