Monday, September 8, 2014

Year's final supermoon is a Harvest Moon

2014-09-08 by Brooks Hays for "UPI" newswire:
The supermoon is making an encore, its last appearance before the moon's perigee -- the portion of its orbit closest to Earth -- and 2014 slowly fade away.
Of course, the supermoon and the moon aren't two different entities; they're one and the same. And the moon isn't going anywhere, it's just getting a bit smaller. During the moon's perigee, the celestial sphere is some 30,000 miles closer to Earth, making full moons during this period appear beautifully swollen in the night sky. The perigee, and the series of supermoons that arrive with it, won't return until 2015.
Because this last supermoon is the full moon closest to the autumnal equinox, it is called a Harvest Moon -- or on this occasion, a super Harvest Moon. It's the type of full moon that often appears orange in the fading light of the sun, and signals the waning days of the harvesting season. It is also the type of moon that inspired one of the greatest folk rock songs of all time. The full moon following the equinox is called a Hunter's Moon -- it has yet to inspire a Neil Young album.

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