Moon Comparison for January and February 2024

March 28, 2024


Photographer: Emanuele Nifosì
Summary Author: Emanuele Nifosì

The photo comparison above shows the waxing Moon at top, 99 percent full, for January 2024, and the waning Moon at bottom, also 99 percent full, for February 2024. Beyond the slight chromatic difference, due to the changing atmospheric conditions. The terminator (i.e. the line that separates the bright part from the dark part of the lunar surface) for the waxing Moon is found at the western edge (left-most), while for the waning Moon it's along the eastern edge (right-most). Therefore, when observing carefully we can notice how the Moon, which appears full in both photos, reveals different peculiarities based on the incidence of the Sun's rays:

Waxing - near the southeast margin, the Grimaldi Crater is clearly visible and defined, while the north-west craters appear blurred.

Waning: high up near the northeast margin, the Cleomedes Crater and the Mare Crisium are clearly visible. 

On both photos, the light rays emerging from the Tycho Crater, in the southwest sector, and from the Copernicus and Kepler Craters, in the southeast sector, can be easily identified but perhaps have slightly greater definition in the waxing Moon (top).

Photo Details: Nikon Z8 camera; Nikkor 200-500 lens. Waxing Moon Photo: ISO 400; f/14; 1/60 second exposure; taken on January 24, 2024, 5:47 pm local time. Waning Moon Photo: ISO 200; f/18; 1/80 second exposure; taken on February 25, 2024, 11:18 pm local time.

Ragusa, Sicily, Italy Coordinates: 36,786975, 14,697012

Related Links:
The Full Moons of 2020
Geography of the Moon
Geologic Map of the Moon