Supermoon to Mark First Day of 2018

01 January, 2018, 03:32 | Author: Clint Gray
  • GETTY    
     RARE Supermoons occur every one to two years

If you aren't feeling up to moongazing after New Year's Eve, you'll have a second chance to catch a supermoon at the end of January. Those who are unwilling to stay up that late just to gaze at the moon don't have to worry, as the celestial event will be visible from moonrise and throughout the night.

The space agency says the wolf moon - one of three such supermoons since the start of December 3 - will be followed by a "blue moon" on January 31.

A supermoon, as Nasa describes, is a full moon at the closest orbital point to Earth.

However, due to a phenomenon called the "moon illusion" the moon may appear bigger when it's close to the horizon, so this supermoon may appear bigger when it's rising. Luckily, you won't have to wait long to see another one. They often appear at their most spectacular as they rise and set, NASA notes.

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The next two will occur on January 1 and January 31, 2018. The full moon is the first of three consecutive supermoons.

For those still nursing a hangover the night of January 1, an even more intriguing supermoon will rise the night of January 31.

In 2018, there will be one other supermoon on January 31, 2018.

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But that won't be the only rarity that night. Go figure. This total eclipse, which will occur when the sun enters the path of the bright supermoon, will be visible from western North America, the Pacific, and Eastern Asia. The super blue moon will also occur during a total lunar eclipse, when the Earth moves between the sun and the moon, blocking the sun's light from reflecting off the moon.

Lunar eclipses make moons appear blood red because of the way the blocked sunlight bends.

The lunar eclipse, as Quartz reports, will begin at 11:48 am UTC and reach its maximum at 1:30 pm UTC.

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