Astrophotography by Anthony Ayiomamitis

Lunar Image Gallery - Scenic Phenomenon

When the immediate environment is characterized with cold temperatures and wispy clouds, a moon around full will often display the effect commonly referred to as a "lunar halo". Moisture within the wispy clouds will crystallize under these cold temperatures and, when combined with lunar light, we have refractions within the hexagonal crystals which lead to the effect depicted by the various phases of the moon. Furthermore, as is the case with rainbows, the angle between the incident ray of lunar light entering the ice crystal(s) and that redirected back to the observer (resultant ray) is known and, in the case of the lunar halo, measures 22; thus the size of the lunar halo depicted below is approximately 44 is diameter. Given the large amount of sky these circles (or halos) cover, they are often missed when looking at the overhead moon.

Note: The bright speck of light to the immediate left of the apogee moon and at the nine o'clock position is Jupiter lying at a distance of 631 million kilometers away, shining at magnitude -2.7 and with an apparent diameter of 46.67 arc-seconds. The moon at a distance of 404,977 km away as per the image below is very close to its maximum possible distance from earth, thus making it an apogee moon as well.


Image Details
Lunar Halo with Jupiter
Imaging Details
Body:
Moon

Mass:
0.0123 x Earth

Mean Eq Diameter:
0.2719 x Earth

Distance:
404,977 km

Sidereal Rev:
27d 07h 43m 11s

Age:
15d 18h 22m

Phase:
98.8

Diameter:
29.95'

Magnitude:
-12.4

Rukl:
N/A
Date:
October 31, 2012
01:00:20 UT+2


Location:
Athens, Greece

Equipment:
Canon EOS 5D Mark I
Zenitar MC 16mm/f2.8
      @ f4.0


Exposure(s):
1 x 6.0 sec
ISO 100
Canon RAW format
4368 x 2912 Image Size
Manual Mode


Software:
Digital Photo Pro V2.1.1.4
Photoshop CS5


Processing:
Resampling
JPG Compression