How far is the moon from the Earth in this NASA photo?

Big thank you to NASA for allowing the use of its images for our education

Okay so we will use the (quickly Googled) ‘fact’ that Earth’s diameter is about 12 742Km.
TIDBIT: If you measure around the equator, Earth’s diameter is actually about 21Km greater than measured through the Poles, because the Earth is a huge spinning ball of molten metal that bulges out as it spins like a water-filled balloon!

Also we can use that the Moon’s diameter is about 3474Km

And I’m going to advise you to use my favourite software for this kind of visual modelling problem, Geogebra. Or maybe your brain works better than mine!

The moon transits across the face of planet Earth, photographed by a NASA satellite DISCOVR
Our Moon passing in front of our planet – DISCOVR satellite image courtesy of NASA

FYI this beautiful photo was taken by the Earth Polychromatic Imaging Camera ( truly “EPIC” ) on NASA’s DSCOVR satellite. Nice work everyone!

Here is my solution – do try it first though


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