Blue Moon August 31, A Blue Moon will be present for all to see on Friday, August 31, 2012. Don’t miss this one, because you’ll not get another one for almost three years. The Moon will become a full moon at 9:58 a.m. Eastern Daylight Time (EDT), or 1358 Greenwich Mean Time (GMT) on August 31st.
This “second full moon in one month”, or so called the Blue Moon, will not occur again until July 2015.
But, don’t be disappointed if you don’t actually see a “blue” colored Moon. The term Blue Moon is named so because it is relatively rare (on average just once every 2.7 years). That is, it’s only seen “once in a blue moon”.
We get two full Moons in a month — sometimes – because, in part, it takes the Moon approximately 27 days, 7 hours, and 43.2 minutes to go around the Earth once. This is called a sidereal month.
However, the Earth is also going around the Sun. So during these 27-plus days, the Earth has progressed a little ways around the Sun. (It takes about one year to go completely around.)
The synodic month is the period in which the Moon takes to line up with the Sun and the Earth exactly as it did at the beginning of that period. That amount of time is about 29.5 days, or the synodic month.
The average month has 30 days, so there is a slight chance that a full Moon will occur at the beginning of the month and then again, at the end of the month. And, this is happening in August of 2012.
On average, about 27 Blue Moons occur in any given century. So far, in the twenty-first century, we’ve had five of them.
However, what is rare is a bluish colored Blue Moon. It only occurs when something like a volcanic eruption or a forst fire causes the atmosphere to make the Moon appear to be a little bluish.
In any case, go outside and watch the Moon be Full and be a Blue Moon on Friday, August 31, 2012. Hopefully you’ll have a clear night sky over your locality on Earth.