NASA Podcasts

What's Up for September 2012?
08.31.12
 
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What's Up for September. The moon.

Hello and welcome. I'm Jane Houston Jones at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, California.

September 22 is International Observe the Moon Night.

This annual event is inspired by the Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter's mission to scout the moon for safe and compelling landing sites.

LRO is helping to identify sites close to potential resources with high scientific value, favorable terrain and the environment necessary for safe future robotic and human lunar missions.

The moon takes about 29 days to go around the Earth once, and it also takes the moon about 29 days to spin once on its axis. This causes the same side of the moon to always face the Earth.

We can see the moon's far side only from spacecraft.

As the moon orbits Earth, the portion we see illuminated changes.

You can join astronomers around the world at lunar observing events and observe the 7-day-old moon on the 22nd. This is a night when many of the most familiar lunar features are visible, including the landing sites of some of the Apollo lunar missions.

You can even hold your own Observe the Moon event. And you don't even need a telescope! Many features are visible with the unaided eye.

And be sure to check out the International Observe the Moon Night website.

And join me, along with thousands of other amateur astronomers, on September 22 as we share moon views with our communities.

To learn more about all of NASA's missions, visit www.nasa.gov.

That's all for this month. I'm Jane Houston Jones.

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