A reader wonders: Why can we see the Moon throughout the day and never the Solar at evening?
Illustration by Weitong Mai

केवल $12 . में <i>smithsonian</i> Preview thumbnail to subscribe to the journal now”/></p></div>
<p><strong>Query: Why can we see the Moon throughout the day however not the Solar at evening? </strong><br /><em>Millie |  Queens Village, New York</em></p>
<p>By definition, evening is the time when our facet of the Earth is away from the Solar.  This explains why we can’t see the Solar at evening.  However why can we generally see the moon throughout the day?  The Moon orbits the Earth about as soon as each month.  For half a month it’s on Earth’s day facet, and it’s seen for at the least a part of virtually daily throughout that point, particularly for us within the northern summer time.  The distinction is that at evening, even a sliver may be simply seen, so long as it’s inside our line of sight.  So the moon is just not a attribute characteristic for the evening sky.  If individuals consider it that manner, it is just because darkness makes the moon simpler to see.  ,<em>R. Bruce Ward, retired science trainer, Heart for Astrophysics, Harvard and Smithsonian</em></p>
<p><strong>Q: I nonetheless see the time period “American Indian” nonetheless in use, together with within the title of the Smithsonian Museum.  Why not say “Native American” as an alternative? </strong><br /><em>Dan Lau |  Los Altos, California</em></p>
<p>Native individuals prefer to determine themselves with their particular tribe or tribe.  However in the case of describing all these nations with one phrase, there is no such thing as a consensus.  Teams in Alaska desire to be referred to as “Alaskan Natives”, whereas Canadians desire the time period “First Nations”.  Some others in South America name themselves “Amerindians”.  Although the phrase “Indian” initially got here from a misunderstanding, many tribal individuals desire it over options.  (Some say that anybody born in America may be referred to as “Native American.”) I personally say “American Indian” as a result of it’s the language of legislation between the tribal and federal governments.  ,<em>Dennis Zotigh, cultural professional, Nationwide Museum of the American Indian</em></p>
<p><strong>Q: We’ve a christening robe that has been utilized by members of the family since about 1880.  What’s the easiest way to protect it? </strong><br /><em>Robert Metzger |  Raymond, Mississippi</em></p>
<p>your christening robe<strong> </strong>Must be saved in a clear, cool, dry and darkish place to forestall publicity to mild and assaults from bugs or mould.  Please keep away from the basement or attic.  You also needs to retailer your robe in an acid-free archive field to guard it from mud, grime and pollution.  Use an acid-free tissue to cowl the robe and pad the folds to maintain the folds in place and forestall additional splitting.  If you would like extra particular steerage from an professional, you possibly can go to Cultureheritage.org and discover a clothes conservator close to you.  ,<em>Heard Park Evans, Senior Costume Conservator, Nationwide Museum of American Historical past</em></p>
<p><strong>Query: Why do not sea animals die from ingesting seawater like individuals do?</strong><br /><em>Rob Loffridge |  Honolulu</em></p>
<p>Animals reminiscent of seabirds, sea turtles and fish have variations that enable them to take away salt from their methods.  In non-marine animals, nonetheless, ingesting seawater results in dehydration, and ultimately loss of life, because the kidneys have to make use of much more water to flush out the surplus salt from the seawater.  Marine mammals keep away from this destiny by acquiring water by means of their meals.  Some individuals even have particular variations of their kidneys to assist them purify salt extra effectively.  Ingesting a bit saline water by means of unintentional sips doesn’t seem to have any dangerous results.  ,<em>Emily Frostow</em><strong><em>,</em></strong><em>    Ocean Portal Managing Editor, Nationwide Museum of Pure Historical past</em></p>
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