If only there was a ruler long enough to reach the moon
How far away is the moon? It’s not as easy to answer as you think because the moon has an elliptical orbit.
This means it’s not a constant distance away. But we can average it out.
If you take an average distance, the moon is approximately 238,855 miles (384,400 km) away from the Earth.
So, it varies between 225,622 miles and 252,088 miles due to its elliptical orbit. This distance is equivalent to the “lunar distance” measurement.
How do we know how far away the moon is?
Astronauts from 3 of the Apollo missions placed special reflectors on the lunar surface.
Using these reflectors, we can determine with extreme precision how far away the moon is.
In fact, we know the moon is ever so slightly moving away from the Earth by about an inch and a half per year.
How far is the moon?
The moon is about one-quarter of 1 million miles away from Earth. It’s such a big gap that you can just about fit all the 7 other planets in our solar system in between.
Do you want to learn more about the moon and our solar system? If you do, then check out these online courses offered by top universities around the world.
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