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Moon : the earth’s natural satellite (see satellite 2a) that shines by the sun’s reflected light, revolves about the earth from west to east in about 291⁄2 days with reference to the sun or about 271⁄3 days with reference to the stars, and has a diameter of 2160 miles (3475 kilometers), a mean distance from the earth of about 238,900 miles (384,400 kilometers), and a mass about one eightieth that of the earth (often capitalized : usually used with the) — Webster

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The Moon is an astronomical body that orbits planet Earth, being Earth’s only permanent natural satellite. It is the fifth-largest natural satellite in the Solar System, and the largest among planetary satellites relative to the size of the planet that it orbits (its primary). Following Jupiter’s satellite Io, the Moon is second-densest satellite among those whose densities are known. The average distance of the Moon from the Earth is 384,400 km (238,900 mi),[10][11] or 1.28 light-seconds.

The Moon is in synchronous rotation with Earth, always showing the same face, with its near side marked by dark volcanic maria that fill the spaces between the bright ancient crustal highlands and the prominent impact craters. It is the second-brightest regularly visible celestial object in Earth’s sky, after the Sun, as measured by illuminance on Earth’s surface. Its surface is actually dark, although compared to the night sky it appears very bright, with a reflectance just slightly higher than that of worn asphalt. Its prominence in the sky and its regular cycle of phases have made the Moon an important cultural influence since ancient times on language, calendars, art, and mythology.

The Moon’s gravitational influence produces the ocean tides, body tides, and the slight lengthening of the day. The Moon’s current orbital distance is about thirty times the diameter of Earth, with its apparent size in the sky almost the same as that of the Sun, resulting in the Moon covering the Sun nearly precisely in total solar eclipse. This matching of apparent visual size will not continue in the far future. The Moon’s linear distance from Earth is currently increasing at a rate of 3.82 ± 0.07 centimetres (1.504 ± 0.028 in) per year, but this rate is not constant. — Wikipedia

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Moon News -- ScienceDaily Moon News. Current science articles on the Moon. Read about the new lunar mission being planned, how the "Man In The Moon" was created, moon landing facts and more. Images.

  • Moon has a water-rich interior
    on July 24, 2017 at 3:41 pm

    Using satellite data, researchers have for the first time detected widespread water within ancient explosive volcanic deposits on the moon, suggesting that its interior contains substantial amounts of indigenous water. […]

  • The moon is front and center during a total solar...
    on July 21, 2017 at 2:31 pm

    In the lead-up to a total solar eclipse, most of the attention is on the sun, but Earth's moon also has a starring role. […]

  • Viewing Martian moon orbiting the red planet
    on July 20, 2017 at 5:19 pm

    While photographing Mars, NASA's Hubble Space Telescope captured a cameo appearance of the tiny moon Phobos on its trek around the Red Planet. Hubble took 13 separate exposures over 22 minutes to create a time-lapse video showing the moon's orbital path. […]

  • New virtual approach to science in space
    on June 21, 2017 at 6:51 pm

    A new approach to scientific exploration has been revealed by researchers, which they call exploration telepresence. […]

  • In a cosmic hit-and-run, icy Saturn moon may have...
    on May 31, 2017 at 6:36 pm

    Enceladus -- a large icy, oceanic moon of Saturn -- may have flipped, the possible victim of an out-of-this-world wallop. While combing through data collected by NASA's Cassini mission during flybys of Enceladus, astronomers have found the first evidence that the moon's axis has reoriented, […]