Da Vinci Glow

In my childhood, while seeing a waxing crescent (new moon) I sometimes had a sense of supernatural powers that I can see the darker part of the moon as well!

With the passage of time, I came to know it wasn’t out of this world kinda thing, it’s called Earth Shine or Da Vinci Glow. It’s a natural phenomenon, that Moon’s darker part seems lightened up a bit in early days of a lunar month.

Reason for the phenomenon is this path of light:

earthshine diagram.jpg
I made this art! 😛

Sun light => Earth => Reflection from earth surface => incident on moon => Moon Glows!

Promise me you won’t call me eccentric if I say something seemingly weird..

Just like Moon seems glowing because of Sun’s reflected light from it’s surface, similarly Earth also seems lightened up because of the Sun’s reflected light. 

You better tell me it’s reason why 😛

Also, by observing this planetary reflection phenomenon, I ask you one thing:

Why can’t you see Earthshine over moon when Moon is comparatively more lit up? e.g. half lit moon like on 7th or 8th night of a lunar month.

Hint: It has something to do with position of moon.

At the end, I’d like to share my first ever captured earthshine. Captured on Ramzan 3rd on May 18, 2018.

Nikon D7100 + 18-105 mm Lens

Leave a comment if you liked the quick article or found the answer of question or have something inquisitive to share or ask.


4 thoughts on “Da Vinci Glow

  1. Aren’t you should reconsider the placement of [earth, moon, sun] in your art. I think it should be [sun, earth, moon] {at night} because the shape of the moon is due to earth in the light path from the sun.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hey Sajjad!

      I appreciate the way you reasoned. But the shape of moon we see at night, is because of the angle between Sun and Earth while keeping Moon at vertex. Greater the angle, more circular is the moon.

      Secondly, the situation you’re talking about is exactly translated during lunar eclipse. i.e. Moon is on the other side of Earth. And just before the eclipse, it is full moon, Earth intersects the line joining Moon and Sun, blocking sun rays, and hence we get a semi circle that gets recovered to full moon in a few minutes.

      Hope you understood a bit. Let me know what seems inquisitive to you here.



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