November's Supermoon Will Be The Largest Since 1948

By Kim Bussing on November 10, 2016

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Photo Credit: Panakkal Chandramohan via Quora

While full moons are always a delight to watch, the one scheduled to make an appearance on November 14 will be even more so. That’s because it is no ordinary full moon, but the brightest and biggest “supermoon” since 1948. The next time you will encounter this glorious a sight, will be on November 25, 2034.

The phenomenon is a result of the moon’s elliptical orbit around the Earth. When a full moon coincides with perigee, the closest distance to Earth, it can appear up to 14% larger and 30% brighter than during apogee, when it is the furthest away from our planet.

Image Credit: Panakkal Chandramohan via Quora)

The moon’s distance from the Earth ranges from 221,208 miles to 252,989 miles; on November 14, it will get as near as 221,524 miles, or just 316 miles shy of the closest possible distance. This degree of proximity will not happen again for 18 years.

The November full moon, regardless of whether it is a supermoon, is often referred to as the Beaver Moon. According to ancient folklore, it was named by the Algonquin people who set their beaver traps around this time to obtain fur to survive the cold winters.

Supermoon Photo Credit: By Andrew C CC BY 2.0 via Wikimedia Commons

NASA scientists say that while the Beaver Moon will peak at 8:52 am EST, or after moonset for most of the US, it will look as spectacular on Sunday and Monday night. And in case inclement weather causes you to miss seeing it altogether, do not fret. There will be another, albeit slightly smaller, supermoon on December 14. While it will also be spectacular, it may not be as popular. That’s because the supermoon’s brightness will make it hard to observe the spectacular Geminid meteor showers, which will be at their peak on December 13. Stargazers will, therefore, have to seek out darker areas and pay closer attention to see the shooting stars!


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Article Comprehension (8 questions)

  1. What is special about the November 14th full moon?
  2. Why do supermoons occur?

Critical Thinking Challenge

What would happen if there was no gravitational force between Earth and...

Vocabulary in Context

“The next time you will encounter this glorious a sight, will be on November 25, 2034.”

In the above sentence, the word encounter most likely means:

(a) to come upon.


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  • ephieMonday, January 23, 2017 at 6:48 pm
    • saqero5Tuesday, January 17, 2017 at 8:32 am
      its cool
      • 1234560000Sunday, January 15, 2017 at 5:58 pm
        soo cool
        • KNOWNAMEWednesday, January 11, 2017 at 10:15 am
          is the supermoon cool?
          • edogWednesday, January 11, 2017 at 9:27 am
            i give it 5/10 yay peace #edog out
            • edogWednesday, January 11, 2017 at 9:26 am
              good and cool
              • edogWednesday, January 11, 2017 at 9:25 am
                • CynthiaSunday, January 8, 2017 at 8:18 pm
                  This article was astonishing! I've never seen/experienced this occurrence, but am looking forward to it in the predicted year (2038). I used this for an assignment and am almost positive I will get a high grade. Who wouldn't? There is so much about our solar system that we have yet to explore.
                  • EvaThursday, January 5, 2017 at 2:28 pm
                    I saw that once it was so cool
                    • EWW DANG!!Wednesday, December 28, 2016 at 5:45 pm
                      EWW DANG!! says " EWW MOONS!! "

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