Lunar Analemma Composite

By: Juan Carlos Casado


Region: Europe

Site: Figueres - Spain

Date: 2011

Comments: 3

Have you heard of Lunar Analemma? This digital composite image illustrates the changing position and phase of the Moon over the Dali Theater and Museum in Figueres, Spain, during one lunar month. Analemma is generally known as the motion of the sun in the sky in a complete year. if you follow the position of the Sun at the same time each day, it makes an 8-like trace over the course of a year known as analemma. The position change is caused by the Earth's motion around the Sun combined with the tilt of the Earth's rotation axis (see 1, 2, 3).
The analemma of the moon forms in a much shorter time, just one month, if you would be lucky with clear sky every night. As described by the photographer "The first image (the first quarter moon) was captured on 2011 January 12. If I could capture a photo each night then all of them would be digitally aligned and combined. Due to the orbital motion of the Moon each day the moon was imaged about 51 minutes later to keep the position of the moon in the sky relative to the landscape. The foreground is seen through a wide-angle lens which also captured the original moon shots but telephoto images of the moon (made at the same time) are superimposed precisely on the background image to clearly show the lunar details and the phase. Due to bad weather in some nights some of the images were obtained in a later date (during next months) when positions of the Moon returned to the predicted place (all planned using astronomical software). Finally because of all these the lunar analemma was complete in 11 months (surprisingly about the same time for a solar analemma!). As appears in the image the moon analemma produces open loops in which the size and shape of the lobes varies gradually along the months. Down on the Earth appears appears the Dali museum and theater, home to much of the valuable art works of Salvador Dali. On the roof of the building are figures in an attitude of greeting. The geodesic dome on the right is the roof of Dali mausoleum where some of his most famous works are exhibited." Juan Carlos Casado/

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