KEY POINTS

  • 2020's second supermoon event will happen next year
  • The upcoming supermoon will be the brightest full moon of the year
  • The Pink Moon was named after a wildflower

The second supermoon of the year is about to take place next week. It is expected to be the brightest full moon of 2020.

Supermoons occur when the Moon appears full as it reaches its closest point to Earth in its orbit, which is referred to as the perigee. In contrast, the apogee refers to the natural satellite’s farthest point from Earth.

The Moon’s distance from Earth varies due to its natural orbit. Instead of following a perfectly circular path around the planet, the Moon moves along an eccentric trajectory. The last time the Moon reached its apogee was on March 24.

During that time, the natural satellite was about 252,707 miles away from Earth, according to the Smithsonian Magazine. It was considered as the Moon’s farthest distance from Earth for the year.  

On April 7, the Moon is expected to approach Earth from only 221,772 miles away. Since it will be a full moon during this time, a supermoon will appear. According to experts, the full moon will reach its peak on April 7 at 10:35 pm EDT.

The upcoming lunar event will serve as the second supermoon of the year. The first happened on March 9, while the last one will appear on May 7. Experts noted that the upcoming supermoon would be the brightest of the year.

The supermoon appearing next week is also known as the Pink Moon. Despite its name, the Moon will not appear pinkish. Instead, it will have a golden orange color when it reaches its peak.

According to Almanac.com, the upcoming lunar event got its name because it corresponds to the bloom of a wildflower known as Phlox subulata, which is characterized by its vibrant pink petals.

“In truth, April’s full Moon often corresponded with the early springtime blooms of a certain wildflower native to eastern North America: Phlox subulata—commonly called creeping phlox or moss phlox—which also went by the name ‘moss pink,’” the site stated.

Aside from the Pink Moon, April’s supermoon is also referred to as the Sprouting Grass Moon, Egg Moon and Fish Moon, which are all related to springtime harvesting practices.  

Supermoon DC The moon is seen as it rises over Washington, D.C., Dec. 3, 2017. Photo: NASA/Bill Ingalls via Getty Images