Look up, see the biggest, brightest moon tonightJanuary 30th, 2010 - 1:20 pm ICT by IANS
New Delhi, Jan 30 (IANS) Don’t forget to catch a glimpse of the moon this evening. According to scientists, the moon will be the closer to the earth Saturday than it will be for the rest of the year - appearing at its biggest and brightest.
C.B. Devgun, director, SPACE (Science Popularisation Association of Communicators and Educators) said: “Some full moons are genuinely larger than others and the one today will be huge. It will be 15 percent bigger and 30 percent brighter than we will see for the rest of the year.”
Explaining the reason, he said: “The moon’s orbit is an ellipse with one side 50,000 km closer to earth than the other. In the language of astronomy, the two extremes are called ‘apogee’ (far away) and ‘perigee’ (nearby).
“On Jan 30, the moon will become full three hours after reaching perigee, making it bigger and brighter than we are going to see for the rest of 2010.”
The moon at perigee will look bigger than it looks in all other positions, as the apparent size of closer objects is always more.
N.S. Raghunandan Kumar, general secretary of the Planetary Society of India added: “As this is the second full moon of the month, this will also be a blue moon.”
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Tags: apogee, apparent size, astronomy, blue moon, closer to earth, communicators, ellipse, extremes, full moon, full moons, general secretary, glimpse of the moon, India, New Delhi, orbit, planetary society, science popularisation, scientists, space science