A pink supermoon will rise over Britain tonight, offering the best chance to see a ‘supermoon’ this year.
It’s not actually pink, of course, a ‘Pink Moon’ is the term for the second full moon in April, but it’s the third supermoon so far this year.
Supermoons (or perigean full moons) can be up to 14% bigger and 30% brighter than normal full moons – and are closer due to the moon’s orbit.
Read more: What is a supermoon?
This Thursday’s will come as close as 221,772 miles from us, meaning it will appear larger and brighter in the sky.
The term ‘supermoon’ was coined in 1979, with NASA saying, ‘When a full moon appears at perigee [its closest point to Earth] it is slightly brighter and larger than a regular full moon - and that's where we get a “supermoon”.’
The best times to see this week’s is at moonrise on Tuesday night or at moonset on Wednesday, at which point it will be close to the horizon.
Be sure to look up tonight as a #supermoon will be gracing our night sky.— Institute of Physics (@PhysicsNews) April 7, 2020
Officially known as a perigean full moon, this event occurs when the full moon is at its closest point to the Earth, making it appear bigger and brighter. 🌕 #sciencefromhome pic.twitter.com/yaZmm8w3gE
The term ‘Pink Moon’ comes from a spring flower, Wild Ground Phlox, also known as Moss Phlox which grows in North America, and appear at the time of April’s full moon.
The full moon is linked to the date of Easter, with Easter falling on the Sunday after the full moon that appears after the spring equinox.
The rules date from the First Council of Nicaea in 325BC, with the council deciding that the moon would help pilgrims travel for Easter.
It’s also referred to as the Egg Moon, Sprouting Grass Moon, Growing Moon or Full Fish Moon.
April’s supermoon is the third of the year, following the worm moon on March 9.
The next full moon is referred to as the Flower Moon, which takes place on May 7.