'Supermoon' shines over skies

chinadaily.com.cn | 2016-11-14 19:49

'Supermoon' shines over skies

Participants in a Sydney Harbour Bridge Climb (L) walk across the western span of the famous Australian landmark as the supermoon rises after sunset, November 14, 2016. [Photo/Agencies]

An unusually large and bright moon adorns the night sky on Monday - the closest "supermoon" to Earth in 68 years and a chance for dramatic photos and spectacular surf.

Weather permitting, the phenomenon should appear at its most impressive at 13:52 GMT, when it is at its fullest just as night falls over Asia, astronomers said.

Provided there are no clouds and not too much light pollution, people should be able to see Earth's satellite loom unusually large over the horizon shortly after sunset, irrespective of where in the world they are.

This happens when the moon is full at the same time as, or very near, perigee - its closest point to Earth on an elliptical, monthly orbit.

"On Nov 14, it becomes full within about two hours of perigee - arguably making it an extra-super moon," NASA says on its website.

The orbit itself is changeable, meaning the distance from Earth differs from perigee to perigee - this time it is the closest since 1948 at a distance of 356,509 kilometers.

The average is 384,400km.

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