While confined to their homes due to the lockdown imposed to stem the spread of coronavirus, people in Cyprus will have a unique opportunity to catch a glimpse of the “Pink Supermoon”.
Tuesday marks the third supermoon of 2020 with one more to follow this year.
But this is the brightest supermoon of the year most visible on 7 April in Cyprus at 9.15 pm.
As regards what causes a supermoon, the head of the Cyprus Astronomical Society Chrysanthos Fakas that “the Moon orbits Earth in an ellipse, an orbit that brings it closer to and farther from Earth as it goes around”.
The farthest point in this ellipse is called the apogee and is about 405,500 km from Earth on average.
In comments to the Cyprus News Agency, Fakas said that at the moment, the moon is approaching the Earth’s periphery at the closest point for 2020.
“Tonight, its distance from us will be around 357,000 kilometres, while in cases where it is at its peak, i.e. at the farthest point from the earth, it can reach 400,000 kilometres,” he said.
Fakas said that the moon will appear to be up to 30% brighter and up to 14% bigger.
He explained April’s supermoon was dubbed as Pink by native Americans, due to the fact that it coincided with a pink flower blossoming that month.
“These days Aphrodite in the northeast will also be shinning bright, making it worth our while to step out tonight and look up at the sky.”
He further noted that that 2020 year is also rich in eclipses, with a total of six eclipses, two solar and four lunars. “On June 21, 2020, there will be an annular solar eclipse (with the sun appearing as a bright ring around a dark shadow) that will be partially visible from Cyprus,” he said.