LONDON-Breathtaking photographs captured in brightened night skies across the world showed the first of three consecutive supermoons to occur this winter - and the only one this year. A supermoon is a full moon that coincides with its closest distance to Earth, resulting in a larger-than-usual apparent size of the lunar disk as seen from Earth. This weekend will feature the biggest, brightest full moon of the year, and catching it should be pretty easy for just about everyone.
The Supermoon rises above Whitby Abbey in Whitby, north east England, Sunday Dec. 3, 2017.
Supermoons happen because the moon's orbit around the Earth isn't a ideal circle.
Supermoon rising, December 2.
NASA has called Sunday night's appearance the first in a "supermoon trilogy", that will take place over the next two months.
Supermoons are set to occur twice in January, on the 2nd and 31st. When those times line up with the full moon, we are treated to the spectacle of a supermoon. However, a brighter moon is the effect of an illusion caused by the close location of the moon, which makes the human brain compare it to nearby objects. Photo / AP Image 10 of 11: An aircraft flies in front of a full moon in Van, Turkey.
Second Full Moon, the January 31 supermoon is often referred to as the "Blue Moon".
EarthSky notes this January super blue moon "will pass right through the Earth's shadow", making for a super blue moon eclipse!
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