Supermoon rising a super moon rises over New York as seen from West Orange, New Jersey. Photo credit: GARY HERSHORN/REUTER

Take note Greenpoint, this weekend as the moon rises we will be in for a cosmic treat.  Look up in the night sky and be greeted by a supermoon, the largest and biggest full moon of 2014.

What is a supermoon you might ask? According to NASA, when compared to a regular full moon, a supermoon  is 30 percent brighter and 14 percent closer to the Earth.  And as if that wasn’t cool enough, due to the moon’s proximity to the Earth tonight—a scant 356,896 kilometers away—this supermoon also has the double honor of being called a perigee moon. The next time we will be able to see such a natural phenomenon won’t be until September 28th, 2015.

While supermoons aren’t considered that rare by astronomists, scientists can agree 2014 has been a remarkable year for them.  By the end of this year we will have had three supermoons, all in consecutive order—July 13th, August 10th, and the last falling on the 9th of September.

Average full moon of December 10, 2010 (left) compared to supermoon of March 19, 2011 (right). Image via Marco Langbroek, the Netherlands, via Wikimedia Commons.

This spectacular lunar activity pairs well with the Perseid meteor showers, which will be visible this weekend as Earth passes through leftover debris from the Comet Swift-Tuttle. For those of us lucky to be someplace dark enough, the Perseid’s meteor shower promises to be a show stopper, offering sky-gazers over a 100 falling stars per hour. The peak of the showers will hit between August 10th through August 13th.

So grab your cameras and pitch a primo spot early because the best time to witness this weekend’s supermoon will be as the it’s rising, around 7:45 p.m. Sunday, August 10th. Let’s keep our fingers crossed the skies remain clear because we’re not going want to miss this.


Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *