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Last supermoon of 2022 will light up UK skies this week

Shola Lee

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Last supermoon of 2022 will light up UK skies this week

Featured Image Credit: Arto Hakola / Gerard Ferry / Alamy Stock Photo

The last supermoon of 2022 is nearly here and we couldn't be more excited.

Whether you're an amateur stargazer, love all celestial sightings, or just noticed a lot of mega moons on your way home from the pub this year, the last one is set to appear around 1.30 am on 12 August.

Get ready, the supermoon is on its way. Credit: Paul Biggins / Alamy Stock Photo
Get ready, the supermoon is on its way. Credit: Paul Biggins / Alamy Stock Photo

This full moon is also a sturgeon moon, which gets its name from a fish caught under the moonlight, and falls in the sign of Aquarius.

Supermoons occur when the full moon coincides with the point in its orbit that it gets closest to Earth.

Making it appear bigger, brighter, and more beautiful than your average sighting, the supermoon typically occurs for a couple of months in a row.

Sara Russell from the Natural History Museum said: "During a supermoon, the moon is at a stage where it is closest to Earth.

"This will typically last for two to five full moons, so that’s why there are multiple supermoons in a row.


"After that, the moon goes into the more distant part of its orbit."

Sara went on to add that despite the moon looking particularly big: "The Moon, of course, does not vary in size according to where it appears in the sky.

"It may be that when it is near the horizon there are objects, like trees and buildings, that it can be compared in size to, whereas in the middle of the sky there are no points of comparison, which makes it seem smaller."

That clears up why, when you see a moon when you're out and about, it always looks way bigger than from your window.

Supermoons occur when the full moon is at its closest point of orbit to the earth. Credit: Gerard Ferry / Alamy Stock Photo
Supermoons occur when the full moon is at its closest point of orbit to the earth. Credit: Gerard Ferry / Alamy Stock Photo

Still, supermoons aren't just bigger, they're brighter too, with the incredible sighting casting 30 percent more light over the Earth.

And why are they brighter? Well, given that the moon is at its closest point of orbit to the Earth, it's also closer to the sun, meaning that its rays hit the moon more easily, reflecting from the lunar surface and onto us.

Some supermoons are also bigger than others (not that it's a competition) and the largest of the century is expected to be on 6 December 2052.

While that seems ages away, given that the last few years have blinked by, we might see the incredible sight sooner than we think.

Luckily for us, this phenomenon can be seen with the naked eye, so get ready to look up at the sky towards the end of this week.

Topics: News, Space, UK News

Shola Lee
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