Finding the Daytime Moon

March 19th, 2017, 8:40 a.m. local time

Do you see it?  It’s pretty well hidden, especially with the glazing cloud cover.

That speck towards the bottom and to the right of center was the Waning Quarter Moon this morning.  But it was more than just morning; it was several hours after the Sun had risen.  This image gives a rough approximation of what it’s like to find a Waning Moon phase from a mid-morning to as late as around noon.

I have previously imaged this phase through my telescope, and what is seen are diminishing details.  There is a battle in the sky between the Sun’s light reflected off the Moon and that same light source directly penetrating the Earth’s atmosphere.  Guess which light stream has the upper hand?

Here is the non-resized image of the Moon:

This is far more difficult to photograph with a smartphone’s camera than any nighttime phase.  Over night, it’s easy – just slide your exposure setting down.  But during the full day, the challenge now includes scaling back the total allowed light via the ISO setting.  Previously, I used ISO 200.  But for this particular shot I used ISO 50 and exposure 1/6000.

This practically concludes my Moon-through-smartphone exercises.  I am hoping that when the Moon’s next cycle comes around, it will be a bit warmer outside and I can try another method of Moon capture – sketching.

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