The Biggest Supermoon in Nearly 70 Years



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Image Credit: Flickr/costachico

We’re about to see the biggest since 1948, the closest full moon in the 21st century.

If you go outside on November 14, you might notice the moon is looking bigger and brighter than usual. Bigger in fact, than it has appeared at any point in the last 68 years.

During the event, which will happen on  November 14, the Moon will appear up to 14 percent bigger and 30 percent brighter than an average full moon. This is the closest the Moon will get to Earth until 25 November 2034, so make sure you get a look.

Supermoon

A “supermoon” occurs when the moon becomes full on the same days as its perigee, which is the point in the moon’s orbit when it is closest to Earth.

According to NASA, this month’s supermoon “becomes full within about two hours of perigee—arguably making it an extra-super moon.”
In America, the November full moon is known as a “Beaver Moon,” because it arrives at the time of year when fur trappers would hunt the dam-building animals.

 

“The full moon of November 14 is not only the closest full moon of 2016, but also the closest full moon to date in the 21st century,” says NASA. “The full moon won’t come this close to Earth again until 25 November 2034.”

Depending on where you’re viewing it from, the difference between a supermoon and a regular full moon can be stark, or difficult to tell. If the Moon is hanging high overhead, and you have no buildings or landmarks to compare it to, it can be tricky to tell that it’s larger than usual.

“When the moon is near the horizon, it can look unnaturally large when viewed through trees, buildings, or other foreground objects,” says NASA. “The effect is an optical illusion, but that fact doesn’t take away from the experience.”

Posted in Space on November 3, 2016