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Over the past few decades, the second full Moon has come to be known as a "blue Moon. The most recent "blue Moon" occurred in August Blue Moons are rare because the Moon is full every 29 and a half days, so the timing has to be just right to squeeze two full Moons into a calendar month. The timing has to be really precise to fit two Blue Moons into a single year. It can only happen on either side of February, whose day span is short enough time span to have NO full Moons during the month.

The term "blue Moon" has not always been used this way, however. While the exact origin of the phrase remains unclear, it does in fact refer to a rare blue coloring of the Moon caused by high-altitude dust particles. Most sources credit this unusual event, occurring only "once in a blue moon," as the true progenitor of the colorful phrase.

Why do we always see the same side of the Moon from Earth? The Moon takes as much time to rotate once on its axis as it takes to complete one orbit of Earth.

Both are about In other words, the Moon rotates enough each day to compensate for the angle it sweeps out in its orbit around Earth. Gravitational forces between Earth and the Moon drain the pair of their rotational energy. We see the effect of the Moon in the ocean tides. Eons from now, the same sides of Earth and Moon may forever face each other, as if dancing hand in hand, though the Sun may balloon into a red giant, destroying Earth and the Moon, before this happens.

When does the young Moon first become visible in the evening sky? There is no real formula for determining the visibility of the young Moon. It depends on several factors: The young Moon becomes visible to the unaided eye much earlier at times when the ecliptic is perpendicular to the horizon, and the Moon pops straight up into the sky.

In these cases, it may be possible to see the Moon as little as 24 hours after it was new, although every hour beyond that greatly increases the chances of spotting it. The record for the earliest claimed sighting of the young crescent Moon is around 19 hours, although most experts are suspicious of any claims of times less than about 24 hours.


Time and Date gives information about the dates and times from your local region to any area in the world. Research times across the globe, review the time zone map. Time and Date gives information about the dates and times from your local region to any area in the world. Research times across the globe, review the time zone map.

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