Supermoon lights up the sky

Supermoon lights up the sky

Supermoon lights up the sky

If you caught moonrise Sunday night, or moonset Monday morning before the fog rolled in, you saw the only supermoon of 2017 and the first of three that will straddle the new year. A supermoon is a full moon that coincides with its closest distance to Earth, resulting in a larger-than-usual apparent size of the lunar disk as seen from Earth.

The nearby perigee Full Moons appear about 14 per cent bigger and 30 per cent brighter than Full Moons that occur near the apogee in the Moon's orbit.

This Supermoon didn't just light up the night skies, it also ignited tempers online, as astrophysicists argued the moon may not have been living up to its "super" name.

Skywatchers and stargazers have three opportunities to see a supermoon between Sunday and January 31.

December's Full Moon is traditionally known as the "cold moon".

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Stargazers got a chance to witness the first and only "Super Moon" of this year this weekend.

The fine weather around New Zealand allowed many people to see last night's supermoon rise around 9pm.

There will also be supermoons on January 1, 2018, and January 31, 2018. Totally eclipsed Moons are for this reason called "blood Moons".

"If a 16.1 inch pizza is "super" to you, compared with a 16.0 inch pizza, then we have an issue of vocabulary.:" Tyson wrote in a follow-up Tweet.

The moon's orbit around the Earth is elliptical. Zimmer stood miles away on the other side of Tampa Bay in St. Petersburg, Florida, to capture this impressive view of the supermoon.

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