Waning crescent moon
Photo by NASA
The moon is now only the thinnest of crescents, smaller even than in our photo. If you look for it tonight, you will not see it—for two reasons. First, because it’s now appearing in the daytime sky instead of at night. But even if you look in the day, the moon is so close to the Sun in the sky, and such a thin sliver of light, that it’s drowned by the brightness of the Sun.
We are now just a little more than one moon cycle, and one month, from the total solar eclipse. In a month, the moon will again be approaching the Sun, and from Earth we’ll see less and less of its lighted side until it’s directly between the Sun and us.
(next post in our Moon to the Eclipse series)
The moon orbits the Earth about once a month. As it circles our planet, we see different amounts of the lighted and dark sides of the moon. The blue boxes mark today’s moon.
Orbit illustration by Karl Tate, SPACE.com, from NASA. Moon phase photos by Fred Espenak.