Earth’s moon will tonight be the closest it has been since 1948, resulting in a spectacular supermoon.
The moon’s orbit to Earth is slightly elliptical, meaning that sometimes the moon is closer and sometimes further away from our green planet. If the moon’s closest pass – known as perigree – coincides with a full moon it is known as a supermoon. During perigree the moon can be as much as 14 per cent closer and 30 per cent larger than at any other time. Like tonight.
So make sure you’re keeping an eye out for the moon, because it’s only going to be this big until 25 November 2034.
If you’re keen on trying your hand at taking photographs of the moon, here are a tip from NASA’s senior photographer Bill Ingalls: Have a reference point!
“Don’t make the mistake of photographing the moon by itself with no reference to anything,” he said. “I’ve certainly done it myself, but everyone will get that shot. Instead, think of how to make the image creative—that means tying it into some land-based object. It can be a local landmark or anything to give your photo a sense of place.” Find out more about capturing the moon, here.
Watch the video above for some supermoon statistics and the video below for an in-depth explanation of why it appears.
Videos credit: NASA