Arizona residents who’d like an eyeful of something spectacular will want to head outside and look to the skies just before sunset on Monday evening. The first and biggest supermoon of the year will occur on Monday, April 26, and offer a spectacular sight for skywatchers.
The astronomical phenomenon, which makes the moon appear larger and brighter than normal, will take place at approximately 6:55 p.m. in the eastern skies over Arizona.
It’s also known as a “pink supermoon,” although the color of the celestial body will remain a golden yellow. (The name comes from the fact it’s appearing in April, a time when pink flowers bloom, according to the Farmers' Almanac.)
As any astronomer can tell you, supermoons occur multiple times a year. They’re technically known as a perigee-syzygy of the earth and moon and takes place when our planet's only natural satellite makes its closest approach to our planet.
After rising, Monday night's full moon will reach its peak illumination at 8:33 p.m. According to astronomers. the moon will be 221,000 miles away from our planet, which is about 16,000 miles closer than usual. (That’s approximately 8 percent bigger and 15 percent brighter than a typical full moon.)
Here’s the bad news: Monday night’s forecast calls for cloudy weather and possible rain, so there’s a chance the supermoon might be obscured.
The good news is that the moon will appear to be very close to full (and almost as large) on Tuesday evening when it will rise at 6:55 p.m. in the east/southeast. There will also be clear skies, so you’ll definitely see it. Enjoy the show.
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