Supermoon to light up the sky on November 14

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IF the weather is clear tonight, the moon will be at its biggest and brightest in nearly 70 years, and it won't put on a similar display until late 2034, astronomers say.

A so-called "supermoon" occurs when the moon is not only full, but is orbiting close to Earth. This month's full moon will be the closest to Earth since January 26, 1948.

Chris Hewgill captured the 'normal' full moon last month from the Nambucca Island Golf Club looking east towards the moon rising over bushland.

Chris Hewgill captured the 'normal' full moon last month from the Nambucca Island Golf Club looking east towards the moon rising over bushland.

NASA says a supermoon - technically called a perigee moon - can appear to be as much as 14 per cent bigger and 30 per cent brighter than a full moon at its furthest orbital point.

Since the moon has an elliptical orbit, one side of the orbit (the perigee) is about 48,000 kilometres closer to Earth than the other side (the apogee). When the Earth, moon and sun line up in an orbit, while the moon is on its nearest approach to Earth, we are treated to a so-called supermoon.

People wanting to watch the supermoon rise on November 14 should head off at dusk to an east-facing beach, or to the top of a hill or mountain with uninterrupted views to the east.

The moon will be at its most spectacular as the sky darkens and while it is close to the horizon.  The good news is that no fancy gear is required. In fact, a full moon or a supermoon is the worst time to look through a telescope because the moon is too bright so get ready and grab your camera. 

If you get any photos send them to janine.watson@fairfaxmedia.com.au

This story Get your cameras ready for the supermoon first appeared on Great Lakes Advocate.