Sunday's supermoon will be biggest and brightest full moon this year

01 December, 2017, 05:48 | Author: Devin Moran
  • People watch the supermoon rising in Dar es Salaam

The year's biggest, brightest supermoon is set to grace OR skies this Sunday.

But don't expect this event to be the same spectacle as the "extra-super" supermoon of November 2016, which was the "closest" full moon to date of the 21st century, in addition to being the largest in almost 70 years.

Supermoons are a rare type of full moon. It will appear up to 14% larger and 30% brighter than normal. The term was originally also used to referred to new moons at perigee, but since new moons are not visible from Earth, they're rarely called supermoons.

The best time to view the supermoon is right after sunset when the so-called "moon illusion" makes the already super-sized moon appear even bigger.

The full supermoon won't technically hit the United States until Monday morning (12:45am PT, 3:45am ET), but most of the best moon photo ops happen around moonrise and moonset - that will be around 5pm ET on Saturday and 7:50am ET on Sunday. That's because the Earth is closer to the sun, and the sun's gravity tugs the moon closer to the Earth.


On Sunday, the moon will become full about 7:47 a.m. and reach perigee early the next day, at 12:45 a.m., Space.com reported. However, December's Supermoon will kick off a domino effect of its own: There are two more Supermoons on the way, both of which will occur in January 2018.

However, December's full moon is the only visible supermoon.

At that moment, the moon will not be visible over most of North America.

Part of it depends on where you're viewing the supermoon. The best time to watch a supermoon is when it's low, near the horizon. The moon will appear about 7 percent bigger and 16 percent brighter than average.

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