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The Supermoon Is Coming

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Friday is the longest day of the year. (OK, technically, the longest day started on Thursday night.) But no need to feel all deflated once it’s over: you still have the supermoon to look forward to. That’s when the full moon is especially close to the Earth. And it’s coming this weekend.

EarthSky explains astronomers call this a perigee full moon, which, granted, sounds less dramatic. Whatever you want to call it, it will be full, and it will be close.

SPACE.com has more details.

Supermoon Rises in Weekend Night Sky SundaySunday’s lunar perigee will be the moon’s closest to Earth of 2013. And 32 minutes later, the moon will officially turn full. The close timing of the moon’s perigee and its full phase are what will bring about the biggest full moon of the year, a celestial event popularly defined by some as a “supermoon.”

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Meanwhile, over at Slate, Bad Astronomer says the supermoon is all hype.

This Month’s Full Moon Will Be Cool, But Not SuperOh, is it that time again? The time for everyone to overhype the “Supermoon”? Yup. You’ve probably heard about this: on June 23, the full Moon will be the biggest and brightest of the year, so it’s called the Supermoon. Let me be clear: While this is technically true, you’d never notice the difference in size or brightness by eye.

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But still — in case you need one — it seems like a good enough excuse to get outside Sunday night and look up.

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Category: Astronomy

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About the Author ()

Molly Samuel joined KQED as an intern in 2007, and since then has worked here as a reporter, producer, director and blogger. Before becoming KQED Science’s Multimedia Producer, she was a producer for Climate Watch. Molly has also reported for NPR, KALW and High Country News, and has produced audio stories for The Encyclopedia of Life and the Oakland Museum of California. She was a fellow with the Middlebury Fellowships in Environmental Journalism and a journalist-in-residence at the National Evolutionary Synthesis Center. Molly has a degree in Ancient Greek from Oberlin College and is a co-founder of the record label True Panther Sounds.