Video shows 'pink' supermoon rising over U.S. bridge
TORONTO -- An especially “pink” supermoon was captured rising over a bridge in New York.
Resident Mike Cohea recorded the timelapse video at the Newport Pell Bridge in Rhode Island on Tuesday.
Despite its vivid hue in the video, York University astronomy and physics professor Paul Delaney explains this isn’t the reason why it’s called the “pink” supermoon.
Instead, it’s named after the flowers that bloom in the spring, as a way of celebrating the start of the season.
“Hopefully, if you’re looking at your garden, you’re seeing a few flowers come up and so that’s where the term ‘pink,’ as in ‘pink flowers,’ is coming from,” he told CTV News Channel on Wednesday.
The name arises from local Indigenous peoples or has been adopted from local seasonal activities, he explains. For example, some fall moons are named after harvest seasons.
While there are several supermoons each year, the “pink” supermoon is the largest set to take place in 2020. The supermoon reached its perigee – the point in its orbit where it is closest to Earth – just after sunset on Tuesday, appearing slightly larger and brighter than usual.
The moon’s average distance from Earth is about 384,000 kilometres. But according to Delaney, this month’s supermoon came much closer, maintaining a distance of about 357,000 kilometres from Earth.
A full moon is classified as a “supermoon” when it is at 90 per cent of perigee. According to the Old Farmer’s Almanac, a supermoon is about 14 per cent bigger and 30 per cent brighter than the moon appears when it is farthest away from the Earth.
Though the “pink” supermoon reached its perigee on Tuesday, Delaney assures the lunar spectacle will still be visible on Wednesday.
“So just after sunset tonight [Wednesday], grab binoculars, go outside into your backyard or wherever you feel nice and comfortable, and have a good look at the rising full moon.”
If you miss this one though, don’t worry. Another supermoon is expected for May, although it won’t be quite as large.