How Big Is the Moon?

The moon is about 250,000 miles (402,366 km) from the Earth and has a diameter that is a little more than 2,159 miles (3,475 km). That is a little less than the distance from New York to Los Angeles. The moon’s diameter is almost one-fourth the Earth's diameter, which is 7,926.3 miles (12,756.2 km).

More facts about the moon:

  • There is a slight difference in the equatorial diameter and the polar diameter of the moon. The diameter from side to side is a little greater than from pole to pole. The same is true of the Earth.

  • The entire lunar surface is covered by a thin layer of dust that is about 2 inches (5.08 cm) deep. The dust has accumulated over time from debris breaking up and falling to the surface.

  • Like other bodies, the moon rotates on its axis. Its slow rate of rotation means that it takes 27.3 Earth days to equal one day on the moon. This rotation causes the moon to flatten out slightly, which explains the difference between its equatorial and the polar diameters.

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