Turn your eyes to the sky on Thursday and Friday nights to witness this year’s Harvest moon, which is also the fourth and final supermoon of the year, according to NASA.
The Harvest Moon is the full moon that occurs closest to the autumnal equinox, which fell on Saturday, September 23 this year. As the Harvest Moon falls around the time when many crops are at their peak, the full moon typically provided farmers with extra light after nightfall so they could continue harvesting.
And this year, the Harvest Moon will shine particularly brightly, as it is also a supermoon.
A supermoon is a full moon that occurs when the moon is at its closest point to the earth in its orbit. That close proximity means that the moon appears bigger and brighter than usual. This supermoon will occur at 224,854 miles from earth and will appear about 5 percent larger and 13 percent brighter than the average full moon, NASA said.
This is the fourth supermoon in a row since July 3 — including a rare “super blue moon” on August 30 — but that pattern won’t continue after this moon. The next super moon won’t be until August 14, 2023.
So when is the best time to view it? You’ll begin to see the supermoon Thursday night, and it will be at its fullest by 5:58 a.m. on Friday, according to Almanac.com, the website for The Old Farmer’s Alamanac. Don’t stress about seeing it right at that time – the moon will appear full to most viewers in the days before and after the moon is technically full, The Washington Post reports.
Feature image of a super moon, stock.adobe.com
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