Pink Moon: How to see it, when is it at its brightest, and is it actually pink?
Star and Moongazers are in for a treat this week, as the pink supermoon is set to light up the night skies.
It is the first of two supermoons expected to grace the skies of 2021 within the next month.
Here’s everything you need to know about catching sight of the epic ‘pink’ moon – not that it’ll be hard to miss…
How can I see the pink supermoon?
The moon will be visible anywhere across the UK, provided the night skies don’t get too cloudy.
You could see it in the early hours of the morning of April 27, but it will appear to be full over the next two to three nights.
The moon always rises from the East, and will rise at 8:59 pm tonight.
You do not require special equipment to see it, just have your fingers crossed for a clear sky.
What is the best way to photograph the supermoon?
With the moon being closer and brighter, it will be easier to take photographs of it.
Avoid having the flash on if you going to take a photo.
If you’re using your phone, it’s also a good idea to lower your camera’s ISO sensitivity and raise your focus to 100.
If you’ve got a professional camera, you will have to pick your lens wisely.
Dr. Darren Baskill, physics and astronomy lecturer at the University of Sussex, shared his advice with Science Focus. ‘You need a reasonable zoom lens to capture a detailed picture,’ explains Baskill.
He also recommends an aperture of f/9 to f/10 to achieve a sharper image, with a shutter speed of between 1/60th and 1/125th of a second.
When is the pink supermoon at its brightest?
Unfortunately, unless you were up at the early hours of April 27, you will have missed the pink supermoon at its fullest point.
Astronomer Anna Ross, from the Royal Observatory in Greenwich, said: ‘The average distance of the moon from the Earth is 384,400km, but the moon will reach its closest point this lunar month on April 27 at 16:24, when it will be 357,379 km away.
‘The exact moment of the full moon closest to this point – so the supermoon – is also on April 27, but at 4.31am.’
So, while you may have missed the chance to see it at its brightest, it will still be an incredible sight to see over the next couple of nights – you can’t keep a good supermoon down.
Is the pink supermoon actually pink?
According to Dr Baskill, the moon may only appear pink or reddish for short periods of time, depending on its location as it moves over the horizon.
The moon will only slightly change colour as it moves across the curvature of the Earth – so, don’t go expecting a bright fluorescent pink moon out of your windows.
The pink moon is actually named after pink flowers called wild ground phlox, which bloom in early spring.
When is the next supermoon?
Don’t worry too much about missing the brightest point of this supermoon, as the next one isn’t too far behind.
A full moon takes place every 29.5 days (or thereabouts), with the next full moon set to occur on Tuesday, May 26.
This next moon, called the flower moon, will also be a supermoon.
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