NEW DELHI: An exceptional celestial treat is in store for sky gazers as 'supermoon', the biggest and brightest full moon of the year which will be closest to Earth in 18 years, will be seen in the night sky on Saturday.
"The 'supermoon' will be closest to the Earth in 18 years today and will appear to be the biggest and brightest of 2011, Director of Science Popularisation Association of Communicators and Educators (SPACE) C B Devgun told PTI.
Saturday's full moon will be around 10 per cent bigger and 30 per cent brighter as compared to other full moons during the year, he said.
The term 'Supermoon' was first coined by Astrologer Richard Nolle in 1979. According to him, it is a situation when the moon is slightly closer to the Earth in its orbit than average, which is 90 per cent or more of its closest orbit, and the moon is a full or new moon.
Today, the moon will be only 3,56,577 kms away from the Earth, the closest while at the full moon phase in 18 years.
Earlier, there were supermoons in 1955, 1974, 1992 and 2005.
Regular situations of full moons coinciding with the moon's closest point to Earth in fact happen after about every one year, one month and 18 days when it is about 3,63,104 km away from the Earth, Devgun said.
"This is because the moon's orbit is an ellipse with one side 50,000 km closer to Earth than the other. In the language of astronomy, the two extremes are called 'apogee' (far away) and 'perigee' (nearby)," Devgun said.
At the closest, our natural satellite moon lies roughly 3,56,630 kms from the Earth compared to its average distance of 3,84,800 km from the planet.
"The moon will not only shine brighter but will also appear bigger as compared to other full moons during the year," he said.
The full moon will be at its best at around 3:30am, R C Kapoor, a retired professor of Indian Institute of Astrophysics said.
(story from The Times of India)
I went out and took some photos of the super moon. It was a wonderful sight enhanced by the fact that we are seeing it after 18 years.I wonder what I was doing on a night like this 18 years ago .
In all probability I was curled up underneath a heavy quilt in freezing Mussoorie up there in the Himalayas. Oh I loved the Himalayan moonlight - so bright and sharp, reflecting off the hillsides.
It talked back to you when you spoke to it.
What are you doing friends.
Take out your cameras and shoot the moon on March 19th. Its a historic moon.
Its the night of the Hindu festival of Holi. People are celebrating around bonfires. There is music , food and gaiety. Followed by 2 days of colored water sprinkling and other forms of celebrations.
I made White Peas Chaat tonight.
Click on the name for the recipe
it goes well with a spicy,tangy, yogurt sauce.
You can also add boiled
potatoes to it.
And garnish it with Indian snack mix and tomatoes.
Now shoot the moon.
Are you going to capture
and share it on your blog?