18 Most Interesting Facts About the Moon You Should Know

The Moon is the brightest and largest object in our night sky. It helps make Earth a better place to live by keeping our planet’s wobble on its axis in check, which leads to a more stable climate. The moon also creates tides, which have been a guiding rhythm for humans for thousands of years. The Moon was probably created when a planet the size of Mars crashed into Earth billions of years ago.

The Moon is Earth’s only natural satellite. It is called “the Moon” because people didn’t know that other moons existed until Galileo Galilei discovered four moons orbiting Jupiter in 1610. The Moon was called Luna in Latin. Luna is the main word used to describe anything related to the Moon, such as lunar.

Interesting Facts About the Moon

  1. Dark Side of the Moon: The idea that there is a dark side of the moon is not true. Actually, both sides of the Moon receive the same amount of sunlight. However, we can only see one side of the Moon from Earth. The Moon rotates around its own axis at the same speed it takes to orbit the Earth. This means that the same side of the Moon is always facing the Earth. The side of the moon that is not visible from Earth can only be seen by humans from spacecraft.
  2. Tides Fall on Earth Caused by the Moon: The Moon is responsible for the rise and fall of the tides on Earth. The Earth has two bulges caused by the Moon’s gravitational pull. One bulge is on the side facing the Moon, and the other is on the opposite side facing away from the Moon. The bulges in the oceans move as the Earth spins, which creates high and low tides all over the world.
  3. Moon Drifting Away from the Earth: The Moon is moving farther away from the Earth. The Moon is getting farther from our planet at a rate of about 3.8 cm per year. Scientists predict that this process will continue for approximately 50 billion years. In the future, it will take the Moon about 47 days to complete one orbit around the Earth, compared to the current time of 27.3 days.
  4. Person Weigh on Moon: On the Moon, a person would weigh significantly less. The Moon has less gravity than Earth because it has less mass. This means that you would weigh about one sixth (16.5%) of your weight on Earth. That’s why the astronauts on the moon were able to jump and bounce so high in the air.
  5. About Moon Walk: Only 12 people, all American men, have walked on the Moon. Neil Armstrong was the first man to walk on the Moon in 1969 as part of the Apollo 11 mission. Gene Cernan was the last man to walk on the Moon in 1972 during the Apollo 17 mission. Since then, the Moon has only been visited by unmanned vehicles.
  6. Moon has No Atmosphere: The Moon does not have an atmosphere. The surface of the Moon is not shielded from cosmic rays, meteorites, and solar winds. It also experiences large changes in temperature. On the Moon, there is no air, so there is no sound and the sky always looks black.
  7. Moon Quakes: The Moon experiences earthquakes. These are caused by the Earth’s gravitational pull. Astronauts who went to the Moon used seismographs to study moonquakes. They discovered that these quakes happened deep below the surface and caused cracks and ruptures. Scientists believe that the Moon has a molten core, similar to Earth.
  8. Luna 1 to Moon: In 1959, Luna 1 became the first spacecraft to reach the Moon. This was a spacecraft from the Soviet Union that was launched by the USSR. The object came within 5995 km of the Moon’s surface before entering orbit around the Sun.
  9. 5th Biggest Natural Satellite: The Moon is the fifth biggest natural satellite in our Solar System. The Moon is much smaller than the major moons of Jupiter and Saturn. It has a diameter of 3,475 km. The Earth is approximately 80 times larger in volume than the Moon, but both objects are roughly the same age. One popular idea is that the Moon used to be a part of the Earth. It is believed that the Moon formed when a large object collided with the Earth when it was still very young, causing a piece to break off.
  10. In 1950’s the USA considered detonating a nuclear bomb on the Moon: In the 1950s, the United States thought about exploding a nuclear bomb on the Moon. The secret project, known as “A Study of Lunar Research Flights” or “Project A119,” took place during the height of the Cold War. It was intended to demonstrate strength during a time when they were falling behind in the space race.
  11. Early Perceptions: People used to think that the Moon was a smooth, mirror-like object that reflected the Earth’s oceans and mountains. This idea comes from the ancient belief that the Moon reflects and represents different faiths, beliefs, and perspectives. It was only after Galileo invented the telescope in 1609 and looked at the moon that people discovered its surface is rough and has craters.
  12. The Incas and Lunar Eclipse: Did you know that the Incas used to make loud sounds like howling when they saw the moon during a lunar eclipse? Imagine a group of people making loud sounds, hurting their dogs and pets to make them howl, and pointing spears at the moon. They thought that a jaguar was attacking the moon, which is why there was so much noise!
  13. The Moon Sign in Astrology: Your Moon sign, just like your Sun sign, also determines important aspects of your personality. Your Moon sign reveals the hidden aspects of your personality and how you emotionally respond to various life situations. It shows your feelings and sensitivities, your most vulnerable sides. The Moon governs the zodiac sign Cancer in Astrology. As I mentioned before, it reflects our inner emotions and vulnerabilities. The Moon is a powerful symbol of feminine energy, particularly representing the role of a mother. It represents your natural instincts as a mother, your caring and protective nature.
  14. Super Blood Wolf Moon: Isn’t the name interesting? Continue reading to find out what it’s about. I’m sure you’ve heard of the “Blood Moon”. During a total lunar eclipse, the moon often looks red or brownish-red, like blood. The most recent blood moon occurred in January 2019 and happened at the same time as the Full Wolf Moon and the Supermoon. That’s why it’s called the Super Blood Wolf Moon. Click here to find out when the next lunar eclipse will occur. In many cultures, the Blood Moon was seen as a sign of evil intentions. The ancient Mesopotamians believed that the Blood Moon was a danger to their ruler. They would choose someone to pretend to be the King while the lunar eclipse was happening because they could predict when it would occur.
  15. Moon and Phases: Did you know that the moon goes through different phases as part of its lunar cycle? But did you know that the phases also have spiritual meaning? The waning phase means it’s time to let go and accept loss, while the New Moon represents a new beginning or a fresh start. Waxing represents growth, while the full moon represents fulfilment and success. Here you can watch the different phases of the Moon and see a live view of it. You can also watch the moon phase in Singapore today.
  16. Moonphase Watches: A moon watch was first created in the 16th century. It is used to keep track of the lunar cycle, which lasts for about 29.5 days. They show the days when the moon will be bright. A moon watch is not just visually appealing, but it also helps you organise your monthly rituals and meetings based on the lunar calendar.
  17. Moon In Chinese Culture: In Chinese culture, the Moon represents qualities like gentleness and brightness. In ancient Chinese philosophy, there is a concept called Yin and Yang. Yin represents darkness and Yang represents light. In this philosophy, the moon is associated with Yin, while the Sun is associated with Yang. The concept of Yin Yang represents the balance and unity between opposing energies. The Chinese also celebrate a festival called Mid-Autumn Festival or Moon Festival. It takes place on the 15th day of the 8th month of the lunar calendar. This festival is a time when families come together to celebrate and enjoy a big meal. In Chinese, the words for “full moon” (月圆, Yuè yuán) and “reunion” (团圆, Tuán yuán) sound similar. This is why the full moon is an important time for families to come together. Isn’t this a lovely reminder of family connections and feeling like you belong?
  18. Moon, and trees?: Were you surprised by the heading? That is a very interesting fact. Stuart Roosa, a former US forest service official, travelled on Apollo 14, which was launched in January 1971. He was accompanied by astronauts Alan Shepard and Edgar Mitchell. While his other companions explored the moon, Roosa stayed in the command module to protect the hundreds of seeds he had brought with him. When they came back, the seeds were planted all across the United States and the rest of the world. Most of them grew and are still healthy. The Moon Trees are their name.

Formation of the Moon

Scientists believe that our moon was formed when a large object the size of Mars crashed into Earth about 4.5 billion years ago. The collision had a big effect on Earth and the leftover debris gathered in space to form our only satellite.

The new moon was 239,000 miles (384,000 kilometres) away from Earth, and it was in a molten state. After about 100 million years, most of the “magma ocean” solidified and the less dense rocks floated to the top, forming the crust of the moon’s surface.

Atmosphere, Magnetosphere, and Moon Status

The moon does have an atmosphere, but it is very weak and thin. The outermost layer of the atmosphere is called the “exosphere.” It does not provide any protection against radiation from the sun or impacts from meteoroids.

During the early years of the moon, it is possible that it had an internal dynamo. A dynamo is a mechanism that terrestrial planets use to create magnetic fields that cover the entire planet. Today, our moon has a weak magnetic field that is only strong enough to affect the tides of Earth’s water. The moon does not have its own moon or any rings.

Space Visits

We have explored our moon more than any other body in the solar system, except for Earth. So far, 24 people have travelled from Earth to the moon and 12 have walked on its surface. Many countries have sent many robotic spacecraft to the moon to explore and gather information. We have collected moon rocks multiple times and brought them back to Earth for study.

Moon Size and Distance

The Moon is much smaller than Earth, with a radius of about 1,080 miles (1,740 kilometres), which is less than a third of Earth’s width. If we imagine that the Earth is the size of a nickel, then the Moon would be approximately the size of a coffee bean.

The Moon is about 238,855 miles (384,400 kilometres) away on average. That means you could fit 30 Earth-sized planets between Earth and the Moon. The Moon is gradually moving away from Earth. It is getting approximately one inch farther away each year.

Orbit and Rotation

The Moon rotates at the same speed that it orbits around Earth, which is called synchronous rotation. This means that the same side of the Moon always faces Earth. The far side of the moon, also known as the hemisphere we never see from Earth, is sometimes referred to as the “dark side,” although this term is misleading. The Moon goes around the Earth, and different parts of it are either in sunlight or darkness at different times.

The Moon goes through phases because the illumination on its surface changes from our perspective. During a “full moon,” the side of the Moon that we can see from Earth is completely lit up by the Sun. A “new moon” happens when the side of the Moon facing away from us is fully lit by the Sun, while the side facing us is in darkness.

The Moon takes 27 Earth days to go all the way around Earth and it also spins at the same speed. The Moon appears to orbit us every 29 days because Earth is also moving. It rotates on its axis as it orbits the Sun.

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