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Largest full moon of year rises this weekend
moon pic
The moon will look larger than usual this weekend, as it will be the closest it will get to the Earth in 2013. - photo by Journal file photo

There may be a few more howls at the moon this weekend, as lunar lovers marvel at the super full moon.

The moon will be the closest it will get to the Earth in 2013 tonight and Sunday, which will make it look somewhat larger than usual. According to AccuWeather's Mark Paquette, the term "supermoon" (technically called a Perigee Full Moon by astronomers) was coined by astrologer Richard Nolle. It is used to describe full moon (or a new moon) that is at 90 percent or greater of its closest perigee to Earth.

An extreme super moon occurs when the new or full moon is at 100 percent greater mean perigee. The view of the moon this weekend will therefore be an extreme super moon as it passes 356,991 kilometers away from the Earth, compared to its "typical" distance of 384,400 kilometers.

Super moons can have an effect on the tides, but as far as having any adverse affects on behaviors or weather, there is no supporting science. According to NASA, the combination of the moon being at its closest and in its full moon phase should not affect the internal energy balance of the Earth since there are lunar tides every day. Thus there will be a small difference in tidal forces exerted by the moon’s gravitational pull at lunar perigee, which will not be great enough to overcome the larger forces within the planet.

Most likely, all that will occur is a better view of the moon with some great photo opportunities for those in areas with favorable viewing conditions.

Moonrise will be at around 7:49 p.m. today and 8:47 p.m. Sunday. Super full moon is expected at 4:33 a.m. Sunday.