New Year, New Moon

Photo Anthony Jordon Jr.
“On this first day of 2018, at 5 p.m. EST (2200 GMT), the January full moon will arrive at perigee, its closest point to Earth in an orbit. Today, our lunar companion reaches an extreme perigee distance of 221,559 miles (356,565 kilometers). When these events coincide (a full moon at perigee), some people refer to the event as a “supermoon.”
by Joe Rao, Space.com Skywatching Columnist | January 1, 2018 07:00am ET

Photo Anthony Jordon Jr.
“The January full moon is traditionally called the Full Wolf Moon in the Northern Hemisphere, according to the Old Farmer’s Almanac. In 2018, it occurs on Jan. 1 at 9:24 p.m. EST (0224 GMT). [Note: In Europe and Asia, the full moon occurs Jan. 2 due to time zone differences.]  Moonrise in New York City that day is at 4:34 p.m. local time, just a few minutes before sunset which happens at 4:39 p.m. So the Wolf moon will briefly share the sky with the sun, though you’ll need a view of a relatively flat, unobscured horizon to see it happen.

January’s full moon will also occur just hours after the moon reaches perigee, its closest point to Earth in its monthly orbit, making it a so-called supermoon. At its closest point on Jan. 1, the moon will be 221,559 miles (356,565 kilometers) from Earth. On average, the moon is about 238,000 miles (382,900 km) from Earth, though its orbit is not perfectly circular.”

by Mike Wall, Space.com Senior Writer | January 1, 2018 07:47am ET


Commentary courtesy Space.com

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