Thursday, March 10, 2011

Extreme "Supermoon" to Take Place Next Week

The moon will reportedly be closer to Earth on March 19 than it has been in 18 years. The moon's orbit around the Earth is slightly elliptical, and when it is at the near point it is known as a lunar perigee. However, astronomy and astrology fans are calling this upcoming lunar event a "supermoon."

According to ABC News, AccuWeather blogger Mark Paquette wrote in a blog post earlier this month that he thinks the phrase "supermoon" originated on the website of astrologer Richard Nolle and spread to astronomers online. Paquette said a new or full moon at 90 percent or more of its closest perigee qualifies as a "supermoon." He said that next weekend's full moon will not just be a supermoon but an extreme supermoon because the moon will be almost precisely at its closest distance to Earth.

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