Need a distraction from COVID-19? Catch the super pink moon in UAE
Dubai: If you’re looking to catch a break from all the events surrounding coronavirus COVID-19, there’s an awesome celestial event tonight that you can watch straight out of your window.
Residents in the UAE will be able to see the super pink moon in the night sky, and although it won’t actually be pink in colour, it will certainly be the brightest moon of 2020.
Why the name?
The pink moon is not a phenomenon nor does it have any scientific basis to its name – in fact, its name was coined by early Native Americans because Phlox subulata flowers (pink moss) would usually bloom around this time in the US and Canada.
The pink moon also refers to the first full moon after the spring equinox, which coincides with the arrival of spring in the northern hemisphere.
“The pink moon does not differ from any other full moon that appears during the rest of the year in terms of colour, and despite its name, the full pink moon does not have the colour of its name,” Ibrahim Al Jarwan, member of the Arab Federation for Space and Astronomy, told Gulf News.
“But it will be about 14 per cent bigger and around 29 per cent brighter,” he said.
The pink moon will be the third supermoon of 2020, and will take place in the same month of the Lyrid meteor shower, from April 16 to 25.
“The moon will peak at exactly 6.35am UAE time on April 8, but the best time to see it will be tonight on April 7,” explained Al Jarwan.
Star gazers can catch the moon’s super bright hues from Tuesday 7pm until the early hours of Wednesday morning.
The super moon is also known as the perigee full moon, and refer to the distance from the Earth to the moon. Apogee is the farthest point from the earth, while perigee is the closest point to the earth and appears the largest.
A spokesperson for Dubai Astronomy Group told Gulf News that due to the restrictions to prevent the spread of COVID-19, members were unable to set up the equipment to livestream the best views of the supermoon.
“But on our social media accounts, we will post information and all you need to know about the event,” he said.
“While there is no real peak, the moon will be closest to the earth’s orbit at around 1am,” he added.
Meanwhile, people living in Australia can watch the pink supermoon on the evening of Wednesday 8 April, while those in the UK can see the brightness peak in the early hours of April 8, according to Science Alert.