Have you ever wondered at what stage you can see the new crescent moon?
The next new moon will occur on Saturday December 4th 2021 at
07:43 GMT/UT marking the start of lunation number 1224.
The timing of the December new moon means that sightings of the crescent moon
with modern, conventional, amateur-sized telescopes on Saturday December
4th may be possible from western Brazil, Argentina, Colombia, western
parts of Central America and Mexico as well as parts of the northern Pacific Ocean.
Optical aid on the same day may be needed to find the new crescent moon from
central western parts of South America and parts of the northern Pacific Ocean.
On the same day, naked-eye sightings under excellent conditions are possible
from the eastern central Pacific Ocean region including Pitcairn Island and the
Hawaiian Islands. Easy sightings are possible from the Pacific Ocean region to the
east of the International Date Line i.e. French Polynesia, the Cook Islands and
eastern parts of the Kiribati Republic. On Sunday December 5th
sightings under excellent conditions may be possible northern China, central parts
of Asia, central and north-western parts of Europe, south-western parts of the
British Isles and southern central Canada. Easy sightings of the new crescent moon
on the same day should be possible from most of the world with the exception of
Japan, northern Asia, northern Europe and Canada. Easy sightings of the crescent
moon should be possible on Monday December 6th on a global basis. We
would therefore ask observers to make their observations of the crescent Moon
between December 4th and December 7th and report them to
If you go out just after sunset over the three or four days following the
instant of new moon and have a look low in the western half of the sky near
where the Sun set, you can try and observe the new crescent moon.
You can make the observation with just your eyes or with binoculars or
a telescope. Never look at the Sun directly
or through binoculars or a telescope as you will damage your eyesight.
If you are going to use binoculars or a telescope to find the new
crescent moon, you must make sure the Sun has set.
The crescent moon will be faint shortly after new moon but will brighten
from night to night as the crescent thickens. Cloud or aircraft vapour
trails can easily be mistaken for the Moon so be careful when making the
Scan the western horizon close to where the Sun set. If you can see the
Moon, let us know by entering your observation and location in our report
form. We need to know the date and time of your observation, what the
crescent looked like, where it was in the sky relative to the position
on the horizon where the Sun set and something about the weather
conditions and you, the observer. Even if the weather is clear and you
cannot see the Moon, let us know. A negative observation will also help
Come back to this site later in the month and you can find out what you
should have seen from your observing site. You can also sign up for an
e-mail reminder of the date and time of the next new moon so you can try
your observing skills again.
Over time, we will process your observations and try to improve the models
we use to predict the first sighting of the new crescent moon. Currently,
these predictions produce a classification for a particular date and
location ranging from A (crescent easily visible) through to F (crescent
impossible to see).
For those groups who use the first sighting of the new crescent moon in
their calendars, these predictions are very significant and mark the
beginning and end of periods of fasting and festivals.
More information on these predictions is
available on this site.
This site allows observers to look at the global visibility of the
next new moon, to check their
observations of the last new moon, to
report their observations and to
receive/stop e-mail reminders of the next new
Preliminary results will also be reported on the site when they become available.
Further information on the visibility of the new crescent moon for a specific
location can be found on our Websurf
site by selecting the Crescent Moon Visibility option from the menu.
|What we want you to do|
- Go out each evening following the day of the new moon.
- Find a westerly facing spot with a clear view of the horizon.
- Wait for the Sun to set, then look for the crescent moon in that part of the sky.
- Don't look directly at the Sun, using your naked eye, binoculars or a telescope.
- Can you see the crescent moon? Are you sure? Is it a cloud or a vapour trail?
- Make a note of where you were, the date and time of your observation, the weather conditions and whether you saw the Moon or not.
- Come to this website and report your observation.
- Try and observe the crescent moon each night until you see it, reporting each observation attempt.
- Sign up for an e-mail reminder of the next new moon and come back next month and try the same thing again.