Supermoon, 14 November 2016

This video from the USA says about itself:

14 October 2016

Nothing beats a bright and beautiful “supermoon.” Except maybe, three supermoons! 2016 ends with a trio of full moons at their closest points to Earth.

From eNatureBlog in the USA:

Don’t Miss Monday’s Supermoon

Tuesday, November 08, 2016 by eNature

November’s full moon is special this year.

It’s not only a supermoon — which looks larger to skywatchers than a “regular” full moon — it will be the closest full moon to Earth since January 1948! NASA says we won’t see a full moon this large again until Nov. 25, 2034.

The full moon officially happens next Monday at 8:52 A.M. Eastern Standard Time. So it won’t be visible along the East Coast at the exact moment of fullness, but it will on the West Coast.

So What Makes The Moon Look So Big?

Because the moon’s orbit around Earth is an elliptical shape the moon can be closer or farther from the Earth’s surface depending on where it is in its orbit. The point when our lunar companion is closest to Earth is called perigee. Apogee is the opposite—when the moon is at its furthest point from Earth.

This month, the perigee occurs Nov. 14 at about 6 A.M. EST— within two hours of the moon becoming officially full — meaning that we will see an extra-super, perigee full moon.

So Just How Close Is The Moon?

The distance between Earth and the moon ranges from 221,208 miles at its closest approach to 252,898 miles at its farthest. That’s a difference of about 32,000 miles.

This month, perigee (and the full moon) occurs at 221,524 miles between Earth and the moon, just 316 miles from its nearest possible location. So you can see why the moon will look so big!

What Exactly Is A “Supermoon”

Astrologer Richard Nolle defined the term back in 1979, but its use has really taken off in the past few years. It often it seems that every moon is a supermoon in breathless headlines on the internet, but the term has a very specific meaning.

Nolle specifically defined a “supermoon” as a new or full moon that occurs when the moon is within 90 percent of its closest approach to Earth in a given orbit. And this week’s full moon occurs when the moon is within 99% of its closest approach, so it clearly meets the definition.

But It’s Not All Happening In The Sky

The supermoon also has an impact on coasts and bays. From November through February, the highest tides, known as “king tides”, sweep along the shores during full moons.

The sun is the closest to Earth during those months and the combined gravity of it and the moon working together increases tidal ranges during that time. The tides get even higher during “supermoons” simply because the moon is that much closer to Earth than it normally is.

So When To Look For The Supermoon

On the East Coast , the nearly-full moon rises at 4:30 P.M. this Sunday afternoon , while the sun sets at around 5:00 P.M. The following morning, the moon sets at 6:36 A.M. — so if you scoot out of bed around 5 A.M., you’ll see the moon low in the western sky plump and full. The full moon rises Monday evening at 5:30 p.m., so look for it close to the eastern horizon.

The timing is similar for other parts of the country, the Naval Observatory provides rise and set times for the moon and sun.

The next perigee full moon occurs Dec. 1, the third such moon in an October-November-December lunar trifecta. After that, there will be a perigee full moon on Jan. 1-2, 2018, when the moon and the Earth will be 221,559 miles apart.

So don’t miss out next week!

2 thoughts on “Supermoon, 14 November 2016

  1. Pingback: Supermoon, Geminid meteor shower tonight | Dear Kitty. Some blog

  2. Pingback: Moon made of small moons? | Dear Kitty. Some blog

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