Setting Supermoon and the Belt of Venus

February 15, 2018

Supermoon sunrise (1)

Photographer: Glenn McCreery 
Summary Author: Glenn McCreery 

This photograph of a setting supermoon was taken from the foothills south of Idaho Falls, Idaho, on the morning of January 2, 2018. The camera was pointing to the west. The Moon reached its fullest the previous evening, and was the first of two consecutive supermoons in 2018 -- the second appeared on January 31. A supermoon is simply a full Moon occurring at perigee, it's closest approach to the Earth, and appears approximately 14 percent larger in diameter than a full Moon at apogee when it's furthest from the Earth.

The Belt of Venus, also known as Venus’s Girdle, or the anti-twilight arch, is a pink band visible opposite the Sun's position before sunrise, or after sunset. Its pinkish color is due to reddened light from the rising or setting Sun backscattered from the atmosphere. This band is separated from the horizon by the Earth’s shadow. Note that the Lost River Mountain Range is seen in the background. Photo taken on January 2, 2018, shortly after 8 a.m. Mountain Standard time.

Photo Details: This photograph is a two exposure composite, one exposure for the Moon and sky, and one exposure for the foreground and mountains. Canon 5D IV camera; Canon 24-105 mm f:4.0 lens, set at 105mm; 1/60 second and 1/200 second exposures; f/6.3; ISO 200. The two images were blended in Adobe Photoshop CS5.