On Monday night, stargazers and scientists alike will be watching one of the biggest, brightest supermoons to have happened since 1948! NASA predicts that a supermoon of this size will not happen again before the year 2034, making this one supermoon you won’t want to miss.
"The moon’s orbit around Earth is slightly elliptical, so sometimes it is closer and sometimes it’s farther away. When the moon is full as it makes its closest pass to Earth, it is known as a supermoon," NASA said in a statement.
"At perigree — the point at which the moon is closest to Earth — the moon can be as much as 14 percent closer to Earth than at apogee, when the moon is farthest from our planet. The full moon appears that much larger in diameter and because it is larger shines 30 percent more moonlight onto the Earth," explains the space agency.
When should you be looking for the moon
For those of us in the United States, the best time to be watching the supermoon will be right before dawn on Monday morning, around 6:22 a.m. EST. This is the time when the moon will be closest to the Earth. However, the moon will be in full force by 8:52 a.m. EST, as this is the time it is “opposite” the sun, and most areas in the United States will be covered by moonlight.
Should poor weather conditions limit your chance to see the supermoon, NASA has told us that we will have another opportunity next month, as the last supermoon of 2016 is slated to happen on December 14th.
The November supermoon, also known as the Full Beaver Moon, marks the second of three supermoons for the year. Last month on October 16th, the Hunter’s Moon reached its apex around 12:32 a.m. EST. As mentioned earlier, a supermoon of this size and luminosity will not be seen again for another 18 years!
“I’ve been telling people to go out at night on either Sunday or Monday night to see the supermoon,” Noah Petro, deputy project scientist for NASA’s Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter mission, said in the statement. “The difference in distance from one night to the next will be very subtle, so if it’s cloudy on Sunday, go out on Monday. Any time after sunset should be fine. Since the moon is full, it’ll rise at nearly the same time as sunset, so I’d suggest that you head outside after sunset, or once it’s dark and the moon is a bit higher in the sky. You don’t have to stay up all night to see it, unless you really want to!”
Live Streams - Where to watch the supermoon
There will be two resources for you to utilize if you want to watch a live stream of the supermoon on Monday. On Sunday, at 8 p.m. EST you can tune into the Slooh Community Observatory’s live broadcast. Space.com is also streaming ---->a live supermoon feed. Check ‘em out!