On Saturday May 5, 2012 the moon will reach its lunar perigree and look huge from earth. The super-moon occurs around once a year when the moon is at its closest to the earth and full at the same time. You can follow the super-moon online through live photos and video here. If you're too lazy to go outside and look at it with your own two eyes, the Weather Channel is offering a real time aggregation of photos and videos of the super-moon uploaded to social media websites.
Tonight's full moon will appear around 14 percent larger and 30 percent brighter than average, according to the Examiner. The lunar perigee is expected to reach its peak size at approximately 11:34 pm, a minute later the moon and will line up with the earth, making it extremely bright.
The moon orbits the earth on an elliptical path. The perigee is the closer side, by about 50,000 km; the other side is the apogee. All full moons orbiting on the perigee appear both brighter and bigger from Earth. At the time the super moon occurs the moon will be around 221,802 miles away; the average distance between the earth and the moon is approximately 238,000 miles.
The super moon occurs approximately once each year, and the last one took place over a year ago on March 19, 2011, when the moon was approximately 221,567 miles from the earth, according to RTTNews.
According to NASA, the best place to see the moon in perigee is when it is closest to the horizon.
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For reasons not fully understood by astronomers or psychologists, low-hanging Moons look unnaturally large when they beam through trees, buildings and other foreground objects, NASA wrote in a statement. On May 5th, this Moon illusion will amplify a full Moon that's extra-big to begin with.