Just in time for the theatrical release of Man of Steel, 2013’s most super supermoon will make its appearance on June 22nd and 23rd. What is a supermoon, you ask?
The term “supermoon” originally came from astrology, with astrologer Richard Nolle taking credit for coining the word in 1979. It occurs when the moon is closest to the earth, which happens 3-4 times a year. Scientists also know it as a “perigee moon”, “perigee” referring to the closest point relative to Earth on the moon’s orbit.
So, why is this one so special? The June supermoon (the “Strawberry Moon“) will be the closest of 2013. In addition to a spectacular celestial display, coastal residents can expect higher than average tides because of the increased gravity from the moon’s proximity.
NASA’s ScienceCast explained the supermoon in anticipation of last year’s super supermoon in May 2012: