Paul Wilson (31 Aug 2011)
"New Moon NOT Sighted Sixth Biblical Month Starts Wed Night"

Karaite Korner Newsletter #527

New Moon Report
August 2011 (2)
Sixth Biblical Month

On Tuesday August 30, 2011 observers across Israel looked for the new moon but it was not sighted. Visibility was uncertain even under ideal weather conditions due to a short lagtime of only 35 minutes. Lagtime refers to the time between sunset and moonset. This month the moon set only 35 minutes after the sun. During those 35 minutes, the light of the sun had not faded enough for the moon to be visible, and by the time it got dark enough, the moon had already set or was too close to the horizon to see. Normally when the moon has a short lagtime, it coincides with a small percentage of the moon's surface facing Earth being illuminated. This month the short lagtime of 35 minutes coincided with an unusually high illumination of 3.71% making a concerted effort at sighting the moon worthwhile. Despite our efforts we did not see the moon. Clouds may have played a factor in our negative sighting. New moon day will be tomorrow evening, Wednesday August 31, 2011.

Nehemia Gordon
Jerusalem, Israel