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What would it look like from Earth if the Moon were a giant disco ball?

So, technically, this is what it would look like if the Moon were a disco ball AND orbited Earth at the same distance as the International Space Station, i.e. roughly 420 kilometers (260 miles) above the surface of the Earth. But that doesn't make it any less incredible looking.

This fantastic animation is by Nick of Yeti Dynamics (the same guy behind this simulation of a normal, non-disco-ball moon at a distance of 420km) and comes by way of Michael Stevens of Vsauce. Some good stuff in here from Stevens about Roche limits (if the moon were ever suddenly teleported to so close a distance, it would promptly disintegrate... worth it?) and earthshine – although it's worth the watch for Nick's simulations alone. The one that envisions a giant, single-plane mirror orbiting Earth is especially awe-inspiring.



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Rufus Honker IV

NERD POINT. The disco ball moon is orbiting at 2157.4 kilometers (1294.44 miles).

When dealing with a large object such as the moon, you kind of have to measure the orbit from its center of mass, not from its closest point to the orbiting body - ESPECIALLY when you're dealing with two large objects so proportionality close together. If the center of mass was at 250 miles, most of the near moon would intersect the earth.