Tonight - 9/8-9/14 - is a Super Harvest Moon! LOTS going on with Luna tonight as this will be the 3rd Supermoon since July and it coincides with the Harvest Moon.
Supermoon is a non-astronomical term that has become part of our cultural vocabulary. Astronomically speaking when the Full Moon occurs within 24 hours of being closest to the Earth (perigee) for the Moon's monthly orbital cycle astronomers call it a perigee Full Moon.
You may not have known that each month's Full Moon has a name associated with it that stems from different cultures. In the U.S. the Full Moon names trace back to Indian tribes and our farming heritage.
The Full Moon that occurs closest to the Autumnal Equinox in September is named the Harvest Moon. That is because in times past farmers could use the extra light provided by the Full Moon to bring in their crops.
Because tonight is a Super Harvest Moon the Full Moon will be a little bigger and brighter as it rises in the east at sunset. As a bonus the Moon will be rising just a little later each night for the next couple of days so we can continue to enjoy its splendor.
If we are lucky maybe the Harvest Moon will have some of the wonderful color that was seen in July's supermoon as seen by me from Virginia:
|July 2014 Supermoon - Greg Redfern|
Get outside and enjoy this viewing treat.
Sky Guy in VA