Published: Sun, December 03, 2017
Sci-tech | By Javier West

Supermoon Alert! Sunday's Full Moon Will Be 2017's Only Supermoon

Supermoon Alert! Sunday's Full Moon Will Be 2017's Only Supermoon

Weather permitting, the only full supermoon of 2017 can be seen in the night sky on Sunday, Dec. 3.

According to National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA), the full moon will also occur near the moon's arrival at perigee on January 1 and January 31.

When's the best time to view the supermoon?

In December, the moon will be closest to the Earth on December 4 at 2.15 pm (IST), when it will be 3,57, 492 km away from Earth. But any time you catch a full Moon as it rises or sets, while it's suspended low on the horizon beaming through the silhouettes of trees or buildings, its apparent size might make you do a double-take. Closer to eight o'clock in the evening of 3 December, the Moon will approach the minimum distance, and then will gradually be removed.

The previous sighting to the supermoon was observed back in 2016, which was the first since 1948’s sightings.

Another term for a supermoon is "perigee syzygy", with syzygy describing the alignment of the moon, Earth, and sun in a straight line. "Folks in the Eastern United States, where the eclipse will be partial, will have to get up in the morning to see it", notes Petro.

The Moon will lose its brightness and take on an eerie, fainter-than-normal glow from the scant sunlight that makes its way through Earth's atmosphere. NASA said that the January 31 super moon will have a moon total eclipse, visible from the west of North America through the Pacific Ocean up to the east of Asia. This is quite a rare sight however and only occurs about one in every 14 full moons. "Sometimes during the year we get an opportunity to see the full moon when it is at its closest point and that's what we'll be seeing on December 3".

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