There's a Huge Moon on the Rise

Solstice makes heavenly body look bigger tonight, tomorrow—but it's an illusion
By Nick McMaster,  Newser Staff
Posted Jun 17, 2008 4:59 PM CDT
The nearly full moon rises in the background as a horse eat grass in a field in Bloomsburg, Pa., after the sunset Monday, June 16, 2008, following a thunder storm which moved across the region.    (AP Photo/Bloomsburg Press Enterprise, Jimmy May)
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(Newser) – Northern Hemisphere residents, check out the night sky tomorrow for an extra-large-looking moon. The moon illusion—a trick our brain plays on us—is enhanced by the summer solstice, and when Earth's satellite rises close to the horizon, conditions are perfect, LiveScience notes.

The illusion works because our brains interpret things seen near the horizon as farther away than things overhead. Because we know the moon is not actually farther, we see it as larger. And, despite their celestial seasoning, space-station astronauts experience the same phenomenon.