384'467 km (~364 397 km at perigee,
~406 731 km at apogee)
Traveling by car:
Traveling by rocket:
Traveling by light speed:
3476 km (1/4 of the Earth's)
Driving around by car:
1.62m/sec2 (1/6 of Earth's)
Mean Synodic period (new moon to new moon):
Mean orbital velocity:
Interesting Facts About the Moon
Rotation of moon The same side of the Moon always faces the Earth. The Moon's
rotation period is synchronous with its revolution period around the
Change of distance
Because of a loss of orbital energy to gravity from the Earth,
the Moon is very gradually moving away from the Earth. In the very
early history of the Earth, the Moon looked about 3 times larger in
apparent size in the sky, because it was closer to the Earth.
Lunar atmosphere The Moon has almost no atmosphere, because of its weak gravity.
All types of gas will escape from its surface.
Without an atmosphere, there is no wind or water erosion. The Moon's
surface is about the same now as it was 3 billion years ago. The
astronauts' footprints remain unchanged on the Moon's surface. The
footprints should last at least 10 million years.
Temperatures on the moon, dress code
The surface temperature fluctuates from roughly +300° F during the
2-week daytime to -270 F during the 2-week night. This is because
there is not enough atmosphere to keep the Moon warm at night, nor
protect it from the Sun's rays in the daytime. If you are wondering
what to wear, an astronaut's suit is the most appropriate answer.
The Apollo 11 mission to the moon The Apollo 11 Saturn V space vehicle, at Launch Pad 39A, awaits
the liftoff scheduled for 9:32 a.m. EDT, along with astronauts Neil
A. Armstrong, Michael Collins and Edwin E. Aldrin Jr.
During the planned eight-day mission, Armstrong and Aldrin descended
in a lunar module to the Moon's surface while Collins was orbiting
overhead in the command module. The two astronauts spent 22 hours on
the Moon, including two and one-half hours outside the lunar module.
They gathered samples of lunar material and deployed scientific
They rejoined Collins at the command module for the return trip to
The astronauts splashed down in the Pacific Ocean and recovery was
made by the U.S.S. Hornet on July 24, 1969.
Just twenty seconds' worth of fuel remained when Apollo 11's
lunar module landed on the moon.
The multi-layered space suit worn by astronauts on the Apollo moon
landings weighed 180 pounds on Earth and 30 pounds on the Moon with
the reduced lunar gravity. The average desktop computer contains 5-10 times more computing
power than was used to land a man on the moon.
The surface speed record on the Moon is 10.56 miles per hour. It was
set in an Apollo lunar rover.
Size comparison The volume of the Earth's moon is the same as the volume of the
Lunar magnetic field The Moon has no global magnetic field. You cannot use a compass
to find your direction.
Strange Mathematics: 1/2 equals 1/4 A quarter moon and a half moon are the same thing. The quarter
refers to the fraction of the lunar month which has passed, whilst
the half describes the portion of the Moon's disc which is visible.
Calculation of the Easter date Easter is the first Sunday after the first Saturday after the
first full moon after the equinox. (The equinox is quite often March
21, but can also occur on the March 20 or 22.)
Tides and the moon The moon causes many of the tides in the Earth's oceans. This is
because of the gravity force between the Earth and Moon. At full
Moon and new Moon, the Sun, Earth and Moon are lined up, producing
the higher than normal tides (called spring tides, for the way they
spring up). When the Moon is at first or last quarter, smaller neap
Sun and Moon Eclipses An eclipse of the Sun can occur only at New Moon, while an
eclipse of the Moon can occur only at Full Moon.
The moon is not made of cheese.
Legal status - Buying land on the moon
Though several flags of the United States have been symbolically
planted on the moon, the U.S. government makes no claim to any part
of the Moon's surface. The U.S. is party to the Outer Space Treaty,
which places the Moon under the same jurisdiction as international
waters. This treaty also restricts use of the Moon to peaceful
purposes, explicitly banning weapons of mass destruction (including
nuclear weapons) and military installations of any kind. A second
treaty, the Moon Treaty, was proposed to restrict the exploitation
of the Moon's resources by any single nation, but it has not been
signed by any of the space-faring nations.
Several individuals have made claims to the Moon
in whole or in part, though none of these claims are generally