'Black moon' a sign of the end of the world? Not quite

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Friday, September 30, 2016
The moon

A rare lunar event set for Friday night has some people nervous about the end of the world.

Despite the spooky name, the 'black moon' scheduled to rise over planet Earth on Friday night only signals the arrival of a second new moon in a single month.

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Typically, there is one full moon and one new moon each month because the lunar calendar nearly aligns with Earth's calendar year.

But, there are some instances where you might see two full moons, the second of which is known as a 'blue moon,' NASA scientists say.

The black moon is simply the inverse, where a second new moon rises in the night sky.

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The next black moon isn't expected until August 21, 2017.

For those hoping to see the new moon's arrival, don't hold your breath. A silhouette will cover the moon as it passes through the same part of the sky. As a result, the moon's unilluminated--or dark side--will be facing Earth.

As for the conspiracy theories, this is all a natural phenomenon. Keep calm and carry on.

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