Observe A Very Rare ‘Blue Moon’ At The End Of August, The Last One Until 2037

Image of a 'blue moon'.

Image of a 'blue moon'. Credit: alyssa BLACK/Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 2.0

ONE of the most important astronomical events of the year will occur late on Wednesday, August 30 through to the early hours of Thursday 31.

This second supermoon of the month is better known as a ‘blue moon’, and the rare celestial event will not happen again until 2037.

As explained by the experts at Meteored, it will be the largest and brightest full moon this year, leading astronomers to call it a ‘perigee moon’.

That is because: ‘The orbit of the moon is an ellipse with one side (perigee) about 50,000 km closer than the other (apogee)’, they detailed. When a full moon occurs at perigee it gives the appearance of being larger and brighter.

‘This week’s Moon will be full within nine hours of perigee, making it the closest full Moon of the year (357,181 km away)’, they pointed out.

Sometimes there can be two full moons in one month

The Moon takes 29.5 days to complete one orbit around the Earth, so sometimes there can be two full moons in the same month.

Generally, this happens every two or three years. The other variant is the third full moon of four in the same season, which is also a blue moon, explained ElTiempo.

How and where to observe this phenomenon

The ‘blue moon’ will be visible in most of the world. In Spain, it will reach its maximum apogee at 03:36 am local time on Thursday 31.

However, it can also be seen from when it appears on the horizon, at 9:25 pm on Wednesday 30, and until it sets, at 7:51 am the following day.

According to the experts, the super blue moon will be: ’14-15 per cent bigger and more beautiful than an average Moon’. They recommend going out to observe it after sunset from August 30 going into 31 and looking up at the night sky.

Will it really be blue?

‘The term blue moon has nothing to do with its colour. It is simply the name given to the second full moon that occurs in the same month, or to the third full moon when, in the same season, it produces four full moons’, they explained on the Eltiempo.es website.

One of its particularities is that the interval between the appearance of blue supermoons is not very frequent. ’20 years can go by without us seeing one. The average is generally about ten years. After this super blue moon, we won’t see another one until 2037′, they confirmed.

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Written by

Chris King

Originally from Wales, Chris spent years on the Costa del Sol before moving to the Algarve where he is a web reporter for The Euro Weekly News covering international and Spanish national news. Got a news story you want to share? Then get in touch at editorial@euroweeklynews.com