Full Moon tonight

Full moon rising 6/6 by <a href=

Full moon rising 6/6 by Jeremy Stanley. Creative Commons 2.0

Tonight’s full moon will be the biggest and brightest of the year. In fact there won’t be another full moon this bright for eight years.  Because the moon orbits the earth in an elliptic orbit, not circular, there are times it is much closer to the earth than others. Tonight’s moon will be approximately twenty-eight thousand miles closer to earth than normal. A moon this bright hasn’t been seen for fifteen years.

The moonrise will take place around sunset and will appear fourteen percent bigger and thirty percent brighter than most other full moons. As the moon rises in the sky it will appear smaller and smaller. However this is just an optical illusion, the moon stays the same size throughout the night. No one can fully explain why this occurs, but it is believed that it has to do with the way we perceive objects near the horizon.

Unfortunately for us here in San Diego, the weather forcast calls for partly cloudy skys becoming overcast throughout the night. Hopefully the clouds will stay at bay long enough for us to see this once in a decade bigger, brighter full moon. So head to a highpoint at dusk and watch the moonrise.

You can read more on NatGeo.

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