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Supermoon 2018 To Light Up The Sky On New Year's Day

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The first full moon of 2018, also known as wolf moon, will not only take place at an opportune time on New Year's Day, but it will also be a "supermoon."

That means fireworks won't be alone in lighting up the night sky and ringing in the new year.

New Year's First Supermoon

The supermoon is expected to occur on Jan. 1, and it's part of the supermoon trilogy, according to NASA. This is the second occurrence among the three. The first happened on Dec. 3, while the third is estimated to come into view on Jan. 31.

What Is A Supermoon Again?

As a refresher, a supermoon is when a full moon occurs during the moon's closest distance to Earth in its elliptical orbit, which is called its perigee. As a result, it'll appear 30 percent brighter and 14 percent larger than usual.

"The supermoons are a great opportunity for people to start looking at the Moon, not just that once but every chance they have!" Noah Petro, one of the research scientists from NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center, said.

On a side note, NASA photographer Bill Ingalls has a tip for those who want to take a good picture of a supermoon: Don't photograph the moon without a reference to anything.

Supermoon 2018: Don't Miss The Third One

By all means, the second supermoon of the trilogy is arguably special because it's going to take place during a momentous occasion, but it's worth mentioning that the third supermoon is going to be "extra special." NASA explains that it's going to feature a total lunar eclipse.

"About twice each year, a full Moon lines up perfectly with the Earth and Sun such that Earth's shadow totally blocks the Sun's light, which would normally reflect off the Moon," NASA said.

The third supermoon is also going to be the second full moon of January, which typically occurs once every two and a half years on average. The second full moon in a month is called a Blue Moon by some people, and considering that there's going to be a total eclipse on Jan. 31, the third supermoon is a "super blue blood moon."

In short, stargazers are in for a treat this coming New Year's Day thanks to the second supermoon that's coinciding with the event, but the third supermoon on Jan. 31 is arguably the moon that people can't afford to miss.

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