Friday, January 09, 2009

Did you ever hear of a sundog?

Somehow I missed ever learning about this awesome phenomenon. Eanah, you love astronomy stuff; did you know about it?

I stumbled upon it trying to learn just what a "moondog" is-- same thing as a sundog, it turns out, but with the moon. The moon is much fainter than the sun so moondogs are even rarer, but the best chance to see one is when the moon is full, especially when it's at its perigee, its closest approach to Earth. This weekend we'll have a perigee full moon.

Though I've never seen nor heard of moondogs and sundogs, I have personally seen a very nice clear supernumerary rainbow.


JimAroo said...

love it.... never heard of either. I followed your 1st link and learned a new word: disambiguation which is the clarification that follows from the removal of ambiguity.

Sounds like something we could all use.

JimAroo said...

There is also a verb: disambiguate - to remove ambiguities from. My online dictionary uses this example:
"Can you disambiguate this statement?" I s that perfectly clear?

Adrienne said...

One of the best things about living here is the rainbows. We see supernumerary rainbows all the time.

I have also seen sundogs - just didn't know they had a name.

I guess to see either of those on a regular basis you would have to be situated where there is what I call "big sky".

Eanah said...

Oooh, neat! :-D No, I'd never heard of a moondog or a sundog before, nor have I ever noticed them. Nifty! :-D Thanks for the link!

P.S. I just finished a very fascinating book on astronomy today, in fact. The last chapter about the eeeeevils of intelligent design was rather ridiculous, but the rest of it was amazing. The universe is such an incredibly, mind-bogglingly impressive place!

Rachel Gray said...

"Ambiguate" should be a verb. Some politicians live by it.

Wow, Adrienne, you've seen sundogs? Very cool.

The universe really is a neat little home. :)