What Is A Harvest Moon?

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By By Steve Pool

SEATTLE - The Harvest Moon is considered the full moon closest to the autumnal equinox.

It gets its name from farmers who viewed the light from the full moon as an extra dose of light (and thus, some extra work time) to harvest their crops before the days grow even shorter and the harsh winter weather set in.

This year's version was a bit early -- on Sept. 10, although it can occur as early as Sept 8 or as late as Oct. 7.

Then, there's a geometrical quirk in the orbits of the Earth and Moon around the equinox Usually, the moon rises about 50 minutes later each day. But during the Harvest Moon, the moon only rises about 20-25 minutes later each day, thus the moonrise is right about equal to sunset for three days instead of one, allowing farmers constant light.

For More Information:

science.nasa.gov

www.crystalinks.com

www.space.com

earthsky.com

Your Photos

YouNews Sunday Images Sunday Images
These images were taken Sunday, December 14 with a Nikon D3100 and an Explore Scientific ED127 (Moon) and ED80 (M42
and M31).
YouNews Weekend Sky Weekend Sky
The images of M42 (Orion) and M31 (Andromeda) are short
stacks (lights only) taken Sunday evening with an Explore
Scientific ED80 (wide angle) telescope and a Nikon D3100 DSLR. The image of the moon was taken with an Explore Scientific ED127 (5-inch) refractor.