Phases of the Moon: February
The fifth largest of all the moons in our solar system, Earth’s moon (its only natural satellite) helps to stabilise our climate, control the oceans’ tides, and because its rotation is in sync with Earth, we only ever see the same side of our moon.
Throughout February, like every other month, you will see the moon change as it passes through its eight phases, from new to waxing to full to waning to old to seemingly gone.
The waxing and waning phases are the times when we can see part of the moon. This is caused because the position of the moon in relation to the sun means that the sun’s light only reaches part of the moon’s surface.
Very occasionally, although the moon is in its waxing or waning phase, we can just make out the rest of the moon. The crescent, which is lit by the sun, will appear bright as normal, while the rest of the moon is barely visible – this part of the moon is lit but what is known as earthshine. Earthshine is light that’s reflected back from Earth, and sometimes that’s enough to illuminate the moon!
If you are keen to follow the moon phases for February, we have put together a couple of handy print-outs to stick on your fridge, so that you can track which part of the lunar cycle we are in. Look out for the full moon on 27th February.
Click on the image to view pdf