July’s full moon, known as the Buck Moon, rises today (July 3) as a supermoon.
A wonderful event for skywatchers, Super Moons Watch the lunar disk appear bigger and brighter in the night sky, but even more thrilling as the 2023 Buck Moon kicks off a season of four supermoons in a row. Supermoons can cause a 30% increase in the Moon’s brightness and a 14% increase in the lunar disk when viewed from Earth, but these differences are usually not noticeable to the unaided eye unless the Moon is in close focus at night.
A supermoon is the result of the moon being closer to the Earth during a full moon. Eclipse expert and retired NASA astrophysicist Fred Espanak Space.com told Space.com that during the July Buck Moon, the Moon will be just 224,895 miles (361,934 kilometers) from Earth, compared to its average distance of 238,000 miles (382,900 km).
Related: Supermoon: What is it and when does it happen?
read more: Full Moon Calendar 2023: When to See the Next Full Moon
Supermoons occur because the Moon’s orbit around Earth is not perfectly circular; As a result of Earth’s gravitational influence, the Moon’s orbit is elliptical, appearing like an elongated circle or oval. This means that in the Moon’s 27-day orbit there are times when it is closest to Earth and other times when it is farther away. A supermoon occurs when the moon is in the full moon phase of its 29.5-day lunar cycle and is at perigee, closest to Earth in its orbit.
According to in the sky From New York, July’s Full Buck Moon will rise at 7:10 PM EDT (2310 GMT) on Monday (July 3) and set at 4:33 AM EDT (0833 GMT) on Tuesday (July 4).
After July, the next supermoon will rise on Tuesday, August 1st in the form of a full Sturgeon Moon. During this supermoon, the distance between Earth and its natural satellite will be 222,158 miles (357,530 km), Espanak said.
August 30 will see a second supermoon in the form of a blue moon. This will be a special event for moon watchers because during this “summer supermoon” it will be at its closest viewing distance of 222,043 miles (357,344). km) away.
Summer 2023 ends on September 23rd, and so does this supermoon festival with the rising of September’s Full Corn Moon on September 28th, when the Moon will be 224,657 miles (361,552 km) from Earth.
The Full Corn Moon will also mark the final Super Moon of 2023, with the next Super Moon scheduled for September 18, 2024. in the sky There will be only two supermoons next year, with the next one occurring a month after September on October 18, 2024.
If you want to see the Buck Moon or other supermoons, here are our guides Best binoculars And Best binoculars A great place to start.
If you want to take photos of the moon and the night sky in general, check out our guide How to photograph the moonAs well as ours The best cameras for astrophotography And Best lenses for astrophotography.
Editor’s note: If you’d like to take a picture of July’s Full Buck Moon and share it with Space.com’s readers, send us your photo(s), comments, and your name and location. [email protected].