First supermoon of 2018 falls on New Year's Day

First supermoon of 2018 falls on New Year's Day

Mark your calendars: a series of supermoons will appear on the celestial stage on January 1, and January 31, 2018.

The first day of 2018 brings a "Full Wolf Moon" - the biggest of two supermoons that will rise in January. Supermoons appear to be about 14 percent larger and 30 percent brighter than full moons that appear at the apogee, the farthest point in the orbit, according to NASA.

Supermoon, also known as wolf moon, is a phenomenon that occurs when the moon is full at the same time its position on its orbit is closest to Earth - 360.493 kilometres away at most. Luckily, you won't have to wait long to see another one.

The next two will occur on January 1 and January 31, 2018.

It's hard for our eyes to distinguish these small changes in size when the Moon is high amidst the vastness of the night sky.




For those still nursing a hangover the night of January 1, an even more intriguing supermoon will rise the night of January 31. The lunar-inclined liken the full moon to the crest of a moon cycle, the moment when everything comes to the surface to be analyzed, considered, and released. Therefore the moon on 31 January is a Blue Moon.

But that won't be the only rarity that night.

That Jan. 31 supermoon will also feature a complete lunar eclipse at moonset, viewable in its entirety from western North America and all the way over the Pacific Ocean to eastern Asia, NASA says. With the total eclipse, it'll be a royal spectacle indeed: "a 'super blue blood" Moon. This may cause the moon to appear red in certain areas, making it a Blood Moon as well. Often cast in a reddish hue because of the way the atmosphere bends the light, totally eclipsed Moons are sometimes called 'blood Moons'.

The lunar eclipse, as Quartz reports, will begin at 11:48 am UTC and reach its maximum at 1:30 pm UTC.

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