Friday, November 11, 2016

A super-close full moon

Mondays full moon is another "supermoon"! This will be the closest encounter with Earth since 1948, so the moon may appear 30% larger than the smallest full moons.

The moon has an elliptical orbit around the Earth. The full moon on Monday will occur at perigee (where the moon is closest to the Earth in it's orbit). This moon will be .6% closer than the supermoon in October and .8% closer than the one we will have in December. To the naked eye, they probably won't look much different.

The Earth's atmosphere creates a color illusion when it comes up over the horizon. It often gives it that red or orange color, but that's just the atmosphere refracting light. When the moon is directly overhead, there is less atmosphere for it to shine through, so the color looks different than it does when it rises and sets. This concept is the same reason why sunsets and sunrises look extra red - just a trick being played on our eyes.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Is there a best time for best viewing & photographing?

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