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This video of the Moon's phases is also mesmerising

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A new visualisation from Nasa shows the phases and libration (oscillating motion) of the Moon in incredible detail.

The Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter (LRO) has been travelling around the Moon since 2009, taking high resolution images of its surface - pocked with craters - with a laser altimeter (LOLA) and camera (LROC).

Each frame on the video represents a one-hour period and at such a high speed you can see in great clarity the libration, or "wobble", of the Moon.

It is also possible to see the variable distance the Moon maintains from the Earth - which can differ by up to ten per cent. The furthest away is known as the apogee and the nearest is the perigree, which resulted in the "Super Moon" we saw in August.

Nasa says this highly detailed mapping would be impossible to replicate on a computer model without the work of the LRO.

You can now see what the Moon will look like - as viewed from the northern hemisphere - at any point in 2015 on Nasa's online Scientific Visualisation Studio, which they have nicknamed "Dial-A-Moon".

Those Down Under can see the Moon from the southern hemisphere here.


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