Sunday, December 31, 2017

First Full Moon Of 2018 Is A Supermoon On New Year's Day

First Full Moon Of 2018 Is A Supermoon On New Year's Day

CAPE CANAVERAL, Florida -- The first Full Moon of 2018 is a Supermoon that will occur on New Year's Day, Monday, January 1, 2018, beginning with a moonrise over the Atlantic at 5:30 p.m. Eastern Standard Time (with a few minutes of variation depending on your exact location).

The Full Moon will technically be 99.9% full at 12:33 a.m. before it sets the following Tuesday morning at 7:35 a.m.  

A Full Moon in January has seasonal names such as a "Wolf's Moon" or "Old Moon."

What's so special about this New Year's Day 2018 Super Moon?

According to NASA, a Super Moon occurs because the Moon is in an elliptical orbit around the Earth.  When the Moon is closest, it is at its orbital perigee, which is why a Super Moon is also known as a Perigee Moon. 

A full moon at its closest point to Earth definitely will be big and bright. But it won't look much, if any, different than a "normal" full moon and will not have any readily observable effect on our planet except perhaps slightly higher tides.

When is the best time to watch the 2018 Super Moon?

Low hanging moons near the horizon appear larger to humans.  So the Super Moon will appear biggest to the naked eye on the U.S east coast during and just after the moonrise around 5:30 p.m. on January 1, 2018. 

If you live in a different time zones, the moonrise time would be around the same time in your local time.

Where is the best place to watch the Super Moon?

The Super Moon will be visible around the world.  The best place to watch is wherever the viewer has a good view of the horizon, lack of artificial lighting, and no local cloud cover.