Friday, August 28, 2015

August "Super Moon"

Contrasting a full supermoon (full moon at perigee) with a micro-moon (full moon at apogee). Image credit: Stefano Sciarpetti
This NASA Astronomy Picture of the Day (from 2014 Jan. 21) shows
the smallest Full Moon possible superimposed over the largest Full
"Super Moon" possible (Sources: Stefano Sciarpetti, NASA).

By Glenn A. Walsh
Reporting for SpaceWatchtower

Saturday afternoon's Full Moon marks the first (of three), so-called Full “Super Moon,” for 2015. Next month's Full “Super Moon” on the evening of September 27-28, in addition to being the annual "Harvest Moon" and the largest “Super Moon” of the year, will mark what some people refer as the fourth and last “Blood Moon” Total Lunar Eclipse.

The August Full Moon occurs Saturday Afternoon, 2015 August 29 at 2:35 p.m. Eastern Daylight Saving Time (EDT) / 18:35 Coordinated Universal Time (UTC). This Full Moon is referred to as a “Super Moon” because it is close to Lunar Perigee for the month of August

The Moon will be at Perigee, or the closest point to Earth in its orbit around our planet for the month, the next morning. Lunar Perigee occurs on Sunday Morning, 2015 August 30 at 11:00 a.m. EDT / 15:00 UTC, when the Moon will only be 358,290 kilometers from the Earth.

As with all Lunar Perigee Full Moons, or “Super Moons,” larger-than-usual tides are predicted along ocean coastlines. When the Sun, Moon, and Earth are more-or-less in a straight line in Outer Space, which occurs each New Moon and Full Moon, the size difference between ocean high tides and low tides is greatest. These tides are actually called “Spring Tides,” but have nothing to do with the season of Spring. However, when a “Spring Tide” occurs, at the same time as a “Super Moon” (no matter whether this “Super Moon” occurs during Full Moon or New Moon phase), the tides are even greater than normal “Spring Tides.”

Yes, a “Super Moon” can occur during the New Moon phase. In fact, we had three such New Moon “Super Moons” occur earlier this year in January, February, and March. The three Full Moon “Super Moons” this year occur on August 29, September 27-28 (annual “Harvest Moon”), and October 27 (annual “Hunter's Moon,” four days before the final traditional Cross-Quarter Day of the year: Halloween). The “Super Moon” is defined as the point in time when the center of the Moon (Full Moon or New Moon) and the center of the Earth are less than 361,836 kilometers / 224,834 statute miles apart

In North America, the Native Americans called the August Full Moon the Stugeon Moon, Corn Moon (sometimes Green Corn Moon), Grain Moon, or Red Moon. The fishing tribes, particularly near the American Great Lakes, named it the Sturgeon Moon due to the many sturgeon caught in the Great Lakes and other large lakes at this time.

Of course, other tribes named it the Corn Moon or Green Corn Moon, as well as the Grain Moon, due to the havesting of corn and grain that was underway at this time. Other tribes referred to the August Full Moon as the Red Moon, as the Moon more often appeared with a reddish tint, while rising during the hazy and humid days of mid-to-late Summer.

In the Southern Hemisphere, the August Full Moon has been known as the Snow Moon, Storm Moon, Hunger Moon, and Wolf Moon. Of course, this is due to the Winter-type weather prevalent at this time of year hundreds of kilometers south of the Equator.                                                        

More on the "Super Moon": Link >>>

More on the Full Moon: Link >>>

More on Full Moon names ---
Link 1 >>>
Link 2 >>>
Link 3 >>>

Sun Rise / Set and Moon Rise / Set Times for Cities (U.S. Naval Observatory):
Link >>>

Source: Glenn A. Walsh Reporting for SpaceWatchtower, a project of Friends of the Zeiss.

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