Waid Observatory

Object: First Quarter Moon
Date: 04/06/2006 - Location: Margate, Florida
Telescope: MK-69 Astrograph - Mount: MI-250 - Camera: ST-10XME
Filter: Schuler 10nm Hydrogen Alpha

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Waxing First Quarter Moon


First Quarter Moon

The First Quarter Moon is sometimes referred to as a Half Moon since it displays a half circle.  The Quarter Moon refers to the position in the orbit of the Moon around the Earth.  The New Moon is the starting position in the orbit and is that point where the moon is between the Earth and the Sun.  At this point the Moon is completely dark and is not visible to the naked eye.  As the Moon progresses in its orbit, greater portions of the Moon become visible.  When the Moon is positioned where the Earth is directly between it and the Sun, the entire Moon is illuminated.  This is the Full Moon.  The Quarter Moon, or Half Moon, has progressed through one quarter of its orbit.  The image above is of the Moon just slightly past the Quarter phase.  It is technically termed a Gibbous Moon, which is more than half but less than full.

Copyright Donald P. Waid