Supermoon 2017: here's how to watch the December 3 event

Posted November 30, 2017

That's because of the "moon illusion", the cognitive phenomenon that makes the moon appear bigger to us when it's closer to the horizon than when it's further up in the sky.

It was not until 1979 that Astrologer Richard Nolle first invented the term supermoon. According to NASA, the December supermoon can look 14 percent bigger and 30 percent brighter as compared to when a full moon is at its remotest point from earth.

Early next week, the fourth and final supermoon of 2017 will be visible in the night sky. The variations in apparent size and illumination amount to few percent but they can improve the already incredible sight of the full moon, making a supermoon worth looking up for.

The moon will become totally full on Sunday, Dec. 3, at 10:47 a.m., and will be visible in the New York City sky between Sunday night and Monday morning.

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In the perimeter the Moon will be 357,492 kilometers away from the Earth, while at the time of the full moon a little more (357,987 km). Typically, the moon is 238,000 miles from earth. The shortest and most distant from the Earth (406.268 km) full moon of 2017 had occurred on June 9, near its peak. Just two weeks after it's closest pass on Sunday, the moon will reach 253,000 miles from earth on December 19th. The moon should sit near the constellation Taurus, though it shouldn't be hard to spot.

The post-war, the closest to Earth super-moon was that on January 26, 1948, and the next time the full moon would come even closer to Earth, it would be on November 25, 2034.

Supermoons do not cause extreme flooding, earthquakes or other natural disasters, NASA says.

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