'Supermoon' rises again this weekend

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by Sarah Blais

azfamily.com

Posted on June 21, 2013 at 11:30 AM

Updated Saturday, Dec 21 at 5:47 PM

PHOENIX -- Will you be able to see it from your house?

The "supermoon," the largest moon of the year, is expected to make an appearance at 4 a.m. on Sunday, although it will be visible throughout the weekend.

Also known as a "perigee moon," the phenomenon occurs when the moon is slightly closer to Earth in its orbit than average, most noticeably at the same time as a full moon, according to NASA. The moon may seem bigger, even though the difference in its distance from Earth is small. 

While it can be amazing to see, some also fear a supermoon can trigger natural disasters. If you Google "supermoon," you'll find all sorts of theories that tie supermoons to volcanic eruptions, earthquakes and tsunamis. Astronomers, however, aren't worried at all.

Natural disasters have occurred before and during supermoons, but scientists believe that's just a coincidence.

According to NASA and NOAA, the most notable effect of a supermoon could be extra-high tides -- between 1 and 6 inches higher than normal.

According to NASA, the best to time look will be when the moon is near the horizon.

“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," wrote Dr. Tony Phillips on the Science@NASA website.

Be sure to send your pictures of the moon this weekend to us at weather@azfamily.com or upload it to YouNews here on azfamily.com.

 

3TV meteorologist April Warnecke contributed to this report.

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