Tuesday, October 05, 2011— October’s fullest moon (“Hunter’s”) will rise on the 20th.
My long-time friend, Linda, sent an article from “The Atlantic”, by Marina Koren, “space writer” for the magazine. Her article, entitled, “The Moon Is Leaving Us”, is subtitled, “And we can’t stop it.” Koren combines scientific observations with her sky-watching sense.
She writes how gravity’s unstoppable forces make the moon drift away inch-by-inch and mega-slowly separate from the earth. Over eons this has happened because our small moon has gravity that thus tugs at its planets. Our ocean-covered planet responds in a shifting of tides.
The moon pulling at oceans forces oceans to pull back. The oceans then make the moon’s orbit speed-up, and so it orbits farther away. Scientists call that distancing, “lunar retreat”. They can measure distancing, and have determined that since time immemorial our moon continually has drifted away.
I’m a relative newcomer to moon technologies, interested to know more about Earth’s relationship to the wonderful small planet that lights the nighttime skies. Scientists find that over more millions of years, the moon will become farther, and thus, much smaller, having many effects on Earth, including greater heat and shorter daylights.
Dear Friends: Constant, tiny, incremental shifts, in a mysterious outer world. Diana