If you’ve noticed the moon looking extra impressive this year, you may have spotted a supermoon. That’s because three of them have filled our skies this year. And now the fourth and final one of the year will appear tonight.
Why are supermoons so special, we hear you ask? Well, a supermoon is way brighter than an average full moon. It doesn’t happen all that often, so to catch a glimpse of this rare celestial event is an astronomical treat. With skies across much of the country expected to be clear tonight, conditions will be ideal for you to spot the final so-called ‘sturgeon’ supermoon of 2022.
What is a supermoon?
A supermoon occurs when a full moon coincides with it travelling very close to the Earth – meaning it looks look far bigger and brighter. This particular supermoon is set to come within 360,000 kilometres of our planet.
What is a ‘sturgeon’ supermoon?
The name was given to the August full moon by the Algonquin people of the north-eastern USA because summer was considered a prime time for catching sturgeon in the Great Lakes, Lake Champlain and other major bodies of water in north America.
What time is the supermoon in the UK tonight?
The ‘sturgeon’ supermoon will begin rising at 8.55pm in the south-west of the UK on Thursday August 11. When the sun begins to set at 8.30pm, the moon will rise for a few hours until peak illumination. With clear and sunny weather predicted nationwide, the moon should look bright against the gradually darkening sky. The supermoon will reach its peak in the early hours of Friday morning – at 2.36am, to be precise.
So, grab a blanket, head outside and get ready to look up. There won’t be another one this year.
Plus: here’s everything you need know about the August rail strikes.