Everything You Need To Know About Friday's Rare Black Moon

Photo: Getty Images.
For the second time this month, earthlings of the Western Hemisphere will experience a special event involving our moon. Earlier this month, we got our full moon — the Harvest Moon. And this Friday, on the final day of September, a Black Moon will appear in the sky for the first time since March 2014.

Though the name sounds ominous, according to Space.com, the term Black Moon simply refers to the rare occurrence of two new moons in a single month. Basically, a Black Moon is the exact opposite of a Blue Moon, the term used when you get two full moons in one month. The new moon is the first phase in the lunar cycle and is nearly impossible to see. Space.com explains that the moon is hard to spot during the new moon phase because it's passing through the same part of the sky as the sun, and its dark side is facing us on Earth.

The Black Moon on Friday means September will be closing out with its second very dark night. In fact, the first new moon actually took place on the first of the month, which means September 2016 will be bookended by darkness.

So, while we won't actually be able to see this Black Moon, Friday night will offer the perfect conditions for stargazing in the Western Hemisphere. The Eastern Hemisphere won't get its Black Moon until the end of October.

Black Moons don't happen every day: Travel+Leisure reports that our next Black Moon will occur in July 2019, which make Friday's sky all the more special. (And the stargazing potential sounds like a prime opportunity to take date night to the next level.)
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