NASA’s DIY Moon Calendar Shows the Moon Phase on Any Day of the Year

NASA Moon Calculator and Calendar

Ever wonder when the next supermoon or lunar eclipse will be taking place? Whether you're an astrophotographer or simply an astronomy lover, NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory has made it easy to discover the phases of the moon with a clever DIY project. Their Moon Phases Calendar and Calculator is a fun project that only requires a printer, scissors, a hole punch, some tape, and a brass fastener to complete.

Once assembled, you just spin the wheel to any given date in 2018 and it will show the phase of the moon—in the Northern Hemisphere. And it gets even better. You can use the handy calculator to see what time of day (in the Pacific Time Zone) a particular moon phase is occurring depending on the direction you are facing, allowing you to plan your moon watching perfectly.

You can download the printable worksheet from NASA and get started, following the steps below. And if you want to learn more about the moon, check out NASA's page dedicated to the Moon and the people who have landed on it.

Update: NASA's Moon Phases Calendar has been revised for 2019!

NASA's Moon Phases Calendar and Calculator helps you discover when you can see the phases of the moon in the Northern Hemisphere on any given day.

Print out the worksheet from NASA, which includes a calendar wheel, moon phases wheel, and viewing wheel.

NASA DIY Moon Calculator and Calendar

Shade in the different moon phases with a pencil.

NASA DIY Moon Calculator and Calendar

Cut out the different wheels along the lines as indicated.

NASA DIY Moon Calculator and Calendar

Attach the moonrise and moonset panels to the viewing wheel with tape.

NASA Moon Calculator and Calendar

Punch a hole in the center and assemble the wheels, fixing them together with a brass fastener.

NASA Moon Calculator and Calendar

NASA Moon Calculator and Calendar

Spin the wheel to any given date and match it with the moon phase wheel to see approximately what time of day you can see your favorite moon phase.

NASA DIY Moon Calculator and Calendar

Jet Propulsion Laboratory: Website 

All images via NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory.

This article has been edited and updated.

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Jessica Stewart

Jessica Stewart is a Staff Editor and Digital Media Specialist for My Modern Met, as well as a curator and art historian. Since 2020, she is also one of the co-hosts of the My Modern Met Top Artist Podcast. She earned her MA in Renaissance Studies from University College London and now lives in Rome, Italy. She cultivated expertise in street art which led to the purchase of her photographic archive by the Treccani Italian Encyclopedia in 2014. When she’s not spending time with her three dogs, she also manages the studio of a successful street artist. In 2013, she authored the book 'Street Art Stories Roma' and most recently contributed to 'Crossroads: A Glimpse Into the Life of Alice Pasquini'. You can follow her adventures online at @romephotoblog.
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