Supermoon expected in skies above Gedling borough on Sunday

Thomas Coex  AFP  Getty Images

When the splendid full moon rises this weekend, she'll look a bit bigger and brighter than usual.

On Sunday, Dec. 3 is when the moon will become totally full and at its brightest, specifically at 10:47 a.m. EST that Sunday, rising that same evening around 6 p.m. EST.

Tides are enhanced when Earth is at perihelion (the closest point in its orbit to the sun) and the moon is at perigee, according to PG&E meteorologist John Lindsey. Its apogee, or farthest distance away can be more than 252,000 miles away.

Considering that a full moon can be covered with a fingernail, even a 7% larger moon may not look that much bigger.

The Virtual Telescope project will also provide a livestream of the supermoon's rise over Rome's legendary skyline on December 3, starting at 4 p.m. UT (11 a.m. ET).

But don't expect this event to be the same spectacle as the "extra-super" supermoon of November 2016, which was the "closest" full moon to date of the 21st century, in addition to being the largest in almost 70 years. The full moons on January 2 and January 31 both will be supermoons.

December Full 'Cold Moon,' First and Only Supermoon of 2017, to Be Visible Sunday Night

Some Native American tribes also call the December full moon the Long Nights Moon.

While the moon is undoubtedly both bigger and brighter than usual, our eyes tend to trick us into seeing the moon as larger than it truly is.

Last year, the moon was the closest its been since 1948.

There are plenty of places around the US where you can enjoy the Supermoon as long as the sky is clear, even if just for a minute. "Then slide your finger up or down to darken or lighten the exposure".

If you're using a DSLR, NASA's senior photographer Bill Ingalls recommends that you use the daylight white balance to adjust for the sunlight being reflected off the moon. "Still, it's a great excuse to just go out and look at the sky", says Nichols.


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