Year's brightest supermoon coming to OR skies Sunday night


When to watch: The moon will become totally full on Sunday, Dec. 3 at 15:47 UTC, or 9:47 a.m. CT, but it won't reach its perigee until 2:45 a.m. CT on Dec. 4, according to

A supermoon occurs when a full moon coincides with what scientists call the moon's "perigee" - the point in its orbit when the moon makes its closest approach to Earth. And while 7 percent bigger and 16 percent brighter than the average full moon may not sound that impressive, compared to a micromoon (when the full moon is at the farther end of its reach), a supermoon appears even more bodacious. They appear up to 14% bigger and 30% brighter than normal.

Last year, the moon was the closest its been since 1948. That's because the Earth is closer to the sun, and the sun's gravity tugs the moon closer to the Earth. The full moon is a gorgeous thing on its own and anytime people get excited to look up and revel in the wonders of the sky, it's a win for nature.

The first supermoon of the year was visible on January 12, and the second was on November 3.

Still, don't sleep on the supermoon expected Sunday: It's the only one we'll see for all of 2017.

Year's brightest supermoon coming to OR skies Sunday night
Year's brightest supermoon coming to OR skies Sunday night

Nichols says that despite the difference between a regular full moon and a supermoon, it is not as grand as it appears.

To take a picture of the supermoon with a smartphone, tap on the moon on the screen and hold your finger in place to lock the camera's focus.

"Often I find when the moon is near the horizon I have a better chance of incorporating it with a landmark or person, but there are no rules and sometimes a tall object such as the Washington Monument here in D.C. can be used when the moon is at a very high angle".

Get your eyes to the sky, America, because the supermoon is coming. The supermoon will still be great as it traverses the sky.

"You can do the experiment with your outstretched thumb". Then do it somewhere else. Especially if you get something in the foreground when taking photos.

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