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We’re about to see a record breaking Supermoon

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David Cornish
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Fact: the moon orbits the Earth once every 27 days.

Slightly more interesting fact: the moon's orbit isn't exactly circular, but elliptical (most orbits are). One of the results of this squiffy orbit is the 'supermoon' effect - when a full moon appears to be even bigger than normal, due to it being physically closer to the Earth. 

Ever cooler fact: the biggest supermoon of the century is going to appear in the skies on 14 November.

NASA explains that the supermoon of 14 November can be expected to be up to 14 per cent bigger and 30 per cent brighter than the average full moon. You might have noticed the same effect on 16 October, when a similar supermoon floated on the horizon. An impressive (but not record-breaking) supermoon will also be visible on 14 December.

One side of the moon's orbit sees it swing  30,000 miles closer to Earth than the other side, which happens all the time. What's incredibly rare is for the moon to become a full moon during this phase of orbit - and on 14 November, it will be closer and brighter to the Earth than it has been since 1948. It won't happen again until 25 November 2034 (which we may never see, should Trump get his finger on the button).

For your best chance of seeing the record supermoon in the UK this November, you're going to want to leave any areas of intense light pollution and look east shortly after sunset (4:12pm).

And no, you're almost certainly not going to be able to take a photo of it with your iPhone - while the supermoon will appear impressive to the naked eye, small camera lenses will struggle to pick out the 14 per cent increase in size. 

(Image: Rex)

[Images: Getty]

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David Cornish

Shortlist.com’s esteemed Tech Editor. David has a keen interest in video games, Star Wars and stuff that runs on batteries.

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