Keep up with the news by installing RT’s extension for . Never miss a story with this clean and simple app that delivers the latest headlines to you.


Supermoon rising over Earth this weekend

Published time: July 11, 2014 20:29
Reuters / Mike Blake

Reuters / Mike Blake

Americans with their eyes to the sky this weekend could get a chance to see Earth’s moon as it rarely appears. Starting Friday evening, a so-called “supermoon” will be viewable across the United States.

There will be a full moon in the sky starting Friday night and into early Saturday, and this time around the super-sized satellite will look larger than usual. When a full moon occurs at the same time that its orbit brings it closest to the Earth, as expected this weekend, onlookers are greeted with what scientists at NASA call a “supermoon.”

Five supermoons are expected in all during the course of 2014, and two of them already happened in the month of January. Beginning Friday evening, however, Americans will have their third chance this year to see a full moon coincide as the satellite’s orbit reaches “perigee” (or “near earth”).

Scientists expect that this weekend’s full moon will reach perigee at around 222,611 miles away from Earth — around 30,000 miles closer than the moon will be when it’s at its furthest this year.

AFP Photo / Janek Skarzynski

The moon typically reaches perigee every 28 days or so, and traditional full moons are hardly uncommon. When the two occur at the same time, however, stargazers see a moon that appears much brighter and larger than what’s normally expected by turning to the sky.

Don’t be disappointed if weekend plans will keep you too busy to look outside, though: 2014’s fourth and fifth supermoons are expected to occur in August and September, respectively, and the next instance will bring the oribiting space rock even closer to Earth than what’s expected on Friday evening.

Needless to say, these spectacular sightings might be something to behold, but aren’t exactly the rarest of event — on average, they show up around five times a year.

Reuters / Aly Song

“Like the ‘mini-moon’ and the blue moon, the Supermoon will probably continue to be a part of the informal astronomical lexicon.” Science teacher David Dickinson wrote for Universe Today. “And we'll probably continue to get messages from friends/relatives/random people on Twitter about ‘the biggest full moon ever!’”

In a statement from NASA, Geoff Chester of the US Naval Observatory expressed his annoyance with the lunacy surrounding the whole trend as well.

"There's a part of me that wishes that this 'super-Moon' moniker would just dry up and blow away, like the 'Blood-Moon' that accompanied the most recent lunar eclipse, because it tends to promulgate a lot of mis-information," Chester wrote. "However, if it gets people out and looking at the night sky and maybe hooks them into astronomy, then it's a good thing."

Comments (20)


Mr Vision 14.07.2014 03:45

Sigh. The moon doesn't come closer to Earth. It's the angle of view and the atmosphere that acts as a lens spreading the photon wavelenghts and turn the moon red and large.

The moon is slowly moving a couple of centimeters a year away from the Earth even.


Jean-Claude Meslin 13.07.2014 17:52

Our politicians (all of every country) think more for their career and money to be made that of their country's people. Religious VIP, like the pope have never excommunicated criminals like Hitler or arms dealers, manufacturers and crooks politicians. A new Nazi Empire is building up in America and we call its leaders: friends, partners, colleagues and hold useless deceitful diplomatic conference which lead nowhere. Carl Sagan used to say: Who will speak for Earth... I say: Who will speak for peoples to contain their dangerous nature...


Jean-Claude Meslin 13.07.2014 17:37

You are right. Our environment Earth, Moon in our galaxy is well set. This will change. The Moon, each years goes a few cm away from us. Sometime, she will be too far to help us. Everything in our Universe must obey to the balance rule. When that equilibrium is no more; it is the end (A human who does not take care of himself well, get sick and die. A country run as badly as France now will soon be ruined and will cease to exist ). When we see how stupid we are with over one trillion € wasted each year for our self destruction; we must admit than something is wrong. Think of it...

View all comments (20)
Add comment

Authorization required for adding comments

Register or



Show password


or Register

Request a new password


or Register

To complete a registration check
your Email:


or Register

A password has been sent to your email address

Edit profile



New password

Retype new password

Current password



Follow us

Follow us