Are The Moon Phases The Same Everywhere In The World?

Everyone enjoys looking at the moon in the night sky. It is a beauty to behold, especially if it’s a full moon. But have you ever sat outside, looking at the moon, and wondered if someone from the other side of the world is looking at the same thing? 

No matter which country we are in or what part of the equator we are situated in, the phase of the moon remains the same. If the northern hemisphere is experiencing a full moon, so will the southern hemisphere. This is because the moon has an earth-bound orbit, and we always see the same side of the moon. The earth rotates once in 24 hours, and the moon moves only 1/30th on its axis during that time.

This means that people in all parts of the world see the same moon phase since it takes longer For the moon to change phase than for the earth to rotate fully. But people on different sides of the equator do see the moon from different angles.

To understand this in greater detail and learn more about the moon’s phases, keep reading ahead.

What Are The Different Phases Of The Moon?

The moon’s phases denote the view of the moon from the earth. The view is constantly changing throughout the month. These phases are divided into eight categories, and it takes the moon 29 and a half days to go through the entirety of the eight phases. This makes up the synodic cycle. 

The phases of the moon depend on the position of the sun, moon, and earth in relation to one another. The eight moon phases are; the new moon, waxing crescent, first quarter, waxing gibbous, full moon, waning gibbous, last quarter, and waning crescent.

This video gives more detail about this.

How Does Everyone Experience The Same Phase At The Same Time?

There is a bit of math involved in this. The earth takes 24 hours to complete one rotation; during this period, the moon also covers some orbital distance, but it is not large enough to enter a new phase. Although the moon’s phases are constantly shifting, a few days are needed for the moon to transition from one phase to another.

So, for example, the full moon can last up to 3 days, while a quarter moon lasts around 7. During this time, the earth completes several rotations, and people in different parts of the earth can experience the same phase of the moon simultaneously. 

Why Does The Moon Appear Slightly Different In Different Parts Of The Earth? 

People in different parts of the hemisphere see the moon differently. One of these differences is that the moon appears inverted with respect to each other. This is not due to a change in the moon’s phase but a change in the angle from which you view the moon. Different angles mean different orientations, slightly altering the view, even as the phase remains the same. 

In Conclusion 

The moon phases are the same everywhere. We all experience a new moon at the same time because of the slow orbit of the moon around the earth. But your view is unique and depends on where you are situated.

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