Distance to the moon

Distance to the moon
Publication Date: June, 2014
Type of Resource: Practical activity/investigation

This is a student practical activity that allows students to use the concept of ratios to determine an experimental value for the distance to the moon.

This activity also introduces the idea of sources of experimental error.

Additional Information

It is necessary for the moon to be visible in the sky for students to obtain their measurements. The calculations can be done anytime afterwards.

Note: The measurements should be made with the moon high in the sky to prevent refraction due to the Earth's atmosphere giving an incorrect result due to the moon appearing larger than it really is.

Australian Curriculum:
  • Year 10 > Science Inquiry Skills > Communicating > Communicate scientific ideas and information for a particular purpose,... > ACSIS208
  • Year 10 > Science Inquiry Skills > Evaluating > Evaluate conclusions, including identifying sources of uncertainty and possible... > ACSIS205
  • Year 10 > Science Inquiry Skills > Processing and analysing data and information > Analyse patterns and trends in data, including describing relationships between... > ACSIS203
  • Year 10 > Science Inquiry Skills > Processing and analysing data and information > Use knowledge of scientific concepts to draw conclusions that are consistent... > ACSIS204
  • Year 10 > Science Understanding > Earth and Space Sciences > The universe contains features including galaxies, stars and solar systems and... > ACSSU188