'Wolf Moon' opens 2018 - but are supermoons really so super?

02 January, 2018, 12:07 | Author: Tracy Craig
  • New Year's supermoon lights up the night sky with the phenomenon set to be even bigger and brighter TONIGHT

The moon tonight is called a Supermoon as it will approach a little closer and be a little brighter than other full moons of 2018-though most folks will have a hard time telling the difference.

The first full moon of 2018 will reach its peak tonight between January 1 and 2 - at around 2.24am.

The month's second supermoon will occur on 31 January when there will be a total lunar eclipse or blood moon.

During these events, the moon generally appears to be 14% bigger and 30% brighter than a typical full moon.

Another full moon will light up our skies on January 31 too. In Milwaukee the eclipse will start at 5:48 a.m. and totality will begin at 6:51 a.m. and last until the moon sets at 7:06 a.m., said Bonadurer.

The moon is at its closest point to Earth - known as the perigee - around 221,600 miles away.

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So the moon won't be as bright, but it will "take on an eerie, fainter-than-normal glow", NASA says, and could take on a "reddish hue". Look outside and check out the full moon tonight.

The moon just like the Earth does not have a completely round orbit. "Normally, we are used to seeing the full moon rising above the eastern horizon, but this time it will be best to watch it setting over the western horizon early in the morning", he explained.

The largest recent supermoon occurred in past year.

PAGASA, however, said the moon appearing with a tinge of blue, may occur in certain atmospheric conditions like during volcanic eruptions or when exceptionally large fires leave particles in the atmosphere.

In an advisory issued to all businesses located near the coastline, Goa tourism director Menino D'Souza has also cautioned against the supermoon phenomenon occurring once again on January 31.

"As long as it's clear out, you'll have no trouble seeing the moon at all", she said.

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