As you know, in the far infrared spectrum, the planets of the solar system and their satellites themselves can emit energy. When is the moon brighter in infrared – in the first or last quarter?
The brightness of a celestial body’s own radiation in infrared rays strongly depends on its temperature. When the Moon is in the first quarter, it is morning in its visible hemisphere, and the Sun is just rising or has recently risen above the horizon. At this time, its surface is, on average, colder than during the last quarter, when it is evening on the visible hemisphere. In addition, during the last quarter, the Sun illuminates the darker regions of the visible hemisphere of the Moon (the Ocean of Storms and the surrounding seas), which are heated more from this. As a result, the Moon in the last quarter is brighter in infrared than in the first quarter.
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