How to See the Biggest, Brightest Supermoon of 2022 Next Week – CNET

If you’re a luna-tic, reserve a moment on your calendar around sunset on Wednesday to step outside and check out the biggest moon of the year. That’s when July’s full “buck” supermoon will rise in the east.

A supermoon is the nickname for what scientists call a perigee syzygy, which is a totally metal-sounding name but simply means the moment when the moon is both full and at the closest point to Earth along its oblong orbit around us. The result is simply a big, beautiful moon that can appear up to 15 percent bigger and 30 percent brighter in the night sky. 

The moon will be at its absolute fullest at 11:38 a.m. PDT on Wednesday, according to NASA, but it’ll appear full from Tuesday morning through Friday morning.

The best time to check out this phenomenon will be as the moon is rising at your location any of these nights. On Wednesday, moonrise will be around 90 minutes before sunset and it gets later each night after that. So, after dinner plan to head outside, watch the sunset and then turn around for an encore performance from the rising moon.

Due to an optical illusion, the moon will appear to be even larger when it’s near the horizon at moonrise. This is also when it might have some interesting coloration (usually reddish hues) if there are particulates in the air where you are.

The Farmer’s Almanac attributes the traditional buck moon nickname to Algonquin tribes in the northeastern US because July is when young buck deer can begin to show off their new, budding antlers. NASA points out that the July moon is also known as the thunder moon thanks to seasonal summer storms, the hay moon in Europe or the guru full moon for Hindus, Buddhists and Jains.

Supermoons happen up to a handful of times a year, but this one will be at least a hair more spectacular than any other this calendar year, and it’s the easiest celestial event to witness firsthand, so long as clouds don’t spoil the show. No special equipment is needed, just your eyes and a good attitude.

If the weather doesn’t cooperate, you can always get a view online courtesy of the Virtual Telescope Project in Rome. If you do catch some great photos of your own, please share them with me on Twitter @EricCMack

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