"The Smallest Full Moon Of The Year, and: The Horse On The
Handle Of The Big Dipper"

Scheduled air date: 1998 Apr 06-12

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The Full Moon this month is the farthest from Earth all year, and therefore appears the smallest.  The closest Full Moon of the year will be in November.  (Distances shown are at 1/2-scale of the Earth/Moon size scale.)

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One of the "handle" stars of the Big Dipper—an asterism within Ursa Major—is Mizar.  With good eyesight, this star can actually be seen as a pair; Mizar and Alcor.  But astronomers now know that Alcor is actually two stars, and Mizar five!

If you wish to view illustrations for other episodes, please see our Star Gazer Illustrated directory.

Illustrations on this page were created using TheSky Astronomy Software, an advanced desktop planetarium program designed for Windows.

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