Summer's first Super Moon visible Saturday
Friday, July 11, 2014, 11:07 AM - Calling all sky watchers! Saturday night's Super Moon will be the first of three this summer.
"The moon goes through a regular set of phases every month or so - full moon, half moon, crescent moon, new moon and then back through them to full again - but every now and then, we hear about a Super Moon," says Weather Network digital meteorologist Scott Sutherland.
The scientific term for the phenomenon is "perigee moon" as it makes the moon appear larger and brighter.
Experts say it will happen again August 10 and September 8-9.
"Astrologer Richard Nolle coined the term, back in 1979, which he said was 'a new or full moon which occurs with the Moon at or near (within 90% of) its closest approach to Earth in a given orbit (perigee). In short, Earth, Moon and Sun are all in a line, with Moon in its nearest approach to Earth,'" adds Sutherland.
According to scientists, sometimes it's hard to tell the difference between a Super Moon and a regular full moon as clouds and haze can mask a difference in brightness.
Still, sky watchers might also be able to catch Mars and Saturn in their Super Moon photos on Saturday:
Glare of upcoming supermoon shouldn't wash out planets Mars and Saturn from evening sky. By Richard Joanne Escober. pic.twitter.com/naQ7JB2H84— EarthSky (@earthskyscience) July 10, 2014
"This year there are actually five Super Moons," says Sutherland. "Two were earlier in the year, with the new moons of January and February, with the remaining three filling out the summer."
Want to know more about these Super Moons and what you can expect to see? Be sure to check out Sutherland's detailed analysis here.
It's a very bright moon out there tonight! Almost a supermoon. Photo by Pete Williams in the U.K. pic.twitter.com/evuAW22RpE— EarthSky (@earthskyscience) July 11, 2014