A full moon rises

The high altitude and dry air of the Chajnantor plateau give the Atacama Large Millimeter/submillimeter Array (ALMA), operated by ESO and its international partners, an optimal window to study the cold dark universe. In this striking Picture of the Week, the rolling, rusty and barren landscape of the plateau feels more like an alien world, rather than our own planet.

Thankfully, a familiar friend brings us back to Earth — the full Moon rising at sunset. Over the different lunar phases, the moon rises and sets at different times, while over the course of the year, it rises and sets in different locations on the horizon. Set against the horizon during its rise, the moon often seems to loom larger than usual. But this is only a trick on your eyes due to a famed optical illusion

Our Moon is a unique body within the solar system; it’s Earth’s only natural satellite and is a particularly large moon at 25 percent of its host's size. The Moon, then, exerts extra influence on the Earth, stabilising seasons and climate and producing tides — things without which we might not have life. The Moon is a wonder to admire, indeed. 


About the Image

Release date:8 January 2024, 06:00
Size:4333 x 2826 px

About the Object

Name:Chajnantor, Moon
Type:Solar System : Planet : Satellite
Unspecified : Technology : Observatory

Image Formats

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