Talk:Supermoon

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Question[edit]

How can it occured ? does it occur every year? — Preceding unsigned comment added by 117.219.119.246 (talk) 14:15, 22 June 2013 (UTC)

See Full moon cycle Karl (talk) 11:52, 25 June 2013 (UTC)

Cleanup[edit]

Someone please help this article. I don't even know where to begin, short of deleting everything after the first couple of sentences.

What is this, amateur hour?? --67.188.134.94 (talk) 23:53, 11 March 2011 (UTC)

Agree, this article is really awful. I do believe deleting everything after the first couple of sentences would improve it. Those sentences might need some work too. Darkest tree (talk) 01:46, 12 March 2011 (UTC)
I've flagged this on Wikipedia:Fringe_theories/Noticeboard#Astrology_and_the_Japanese_earthquake, as this article will be getting a lot of pageviews at the moment, judging by the way spurious connections with the Japanese earthquake are being bandied around the less thoughtful corners of the internet, including major tabloid newspapers. 82.46.43.33 (talk) 02:19, 12 March 2011 (UTC)
Thanks for that (I noticed the post and will watch this article). Johnuniq (talk) 04:09, 12 March 2011 (UTC)

Tautology[edit]

"...at 90 percent or more of its closest perigee"... The moon is always at 90 percent or more of its closest perigee, since perigee by definition means it never gets any closer than this. In fact, it is always at 100 percent or more of its closest perigee. 95.149.140.214 (talk) 17:24, 12 March 2011 (UTC)

Perhaps it meant to say ".9 or more of its greatest inward deviation from average distance"? —Tamfang (talk) 17:09, 13 March 2011 (UTC)
Maybe, but if the people creating this content don't understand mathematics, it's not our job to try to translate their nonsense. HiLo48 (talk) 21:17, 13 March 2011 (UTC)

Jessiessica (talk · contribs) corrected it to "90% or less of average distance" (which would imply eccentricity ≥0.1), but sourced the definition to Nolle's site which says "90% or greater of its mean closest approach to Earth (perigee)". Not good enough! —Tamfang (talk) 08:49, 14 March 2011 (UTC)

Sorry, Nolle's definition was ambiguously worded, making it difficult to understand. I changed it to "90% or greater", but if you can think of a more correct way to state this fact you are welcome to edit it. It is necessary to include this aspect of the definition however as it needs to be made clear that a supermoon is not merely any perigee. By the way, I realise in one of my edit description I mistakingly wrote "a supermoon is not merely an apogee". I of course meant perigee. - Jessiessica (talk · contribs)
I'm good at improving language but I can't work with nothing. Nolle's definition (which your last revision restores) is nonsense. The Earth-Moon distance never gets anywhere near as small as 9/10 of its average, so that can't be it either. —Tamfang (talk) 18:25, 14 March 2011 (UTC)
Whether it is nonsense is a distinct question from if that is what Nolle meant. JoshuaZ (talk) 03:30, 15 March 2011 (UTC)

Let me just pop in here to apologize for causing the entire 90% ruckus with my vague and ill-defined usage. I was so caught up in axing the boatload of astrology and disaster nonsense from the article that "at 90 percent or more of its closest perigee" must have sounded great to me at the time. Sorry all around... Darkest tree (talk) 03:46, 19 March 2011 (UTC)

There is nothing unclear about "within 90% of its closest approach". 75.69.114.89 (talk) 02:02, 20 March 2011 (UTC)
OK, I'll play dumb. It's a bit unclear to me. If, say, its closest approach is 100,000 km (I know it's not), is 90,000 within that? HiLo48 (talk) 02:09, 20 March 2011 (UTC)
"within 90% of its closest approach" to me means "the distance between the earth and the moon is at or above 90% of (whatever the closest approach is)". Unless the exact distance of the closest approach is for some reason impossible to accurately measure, I see nothing wrong with the wording. 75.69.114.89 (talk) 02:46, 20 March 2011 (UTC)
See Nolle's definition he emailed me below starting with "Look at it this way..." and you will see why there is such confusion. He implies the 90% is actually in reference to "mean perigee distance" rather than the closest perigee distance. The original definition never made this distinction. He then goes on to confusingly state that it's a time (rather than a distance) parameter.- Jessiessica (talk · contribs)
Maybe he's gone senile. 75.69.114.89 (talk) 02:59, 20 March 2011 (UTC)

timing[edit]

lol. I'm curious, did this article just suddenly appear after the 9.0 Earthquake in Japan, is this another ex post facto prophecy come true? WHY DIDN'T YOU LISTEN?!98.165.15.98 (talk) 13:47, 13 March 2011 (UTC)

The article was created at 21:11, 11 March 2011. [1]. Any fool can make 'predictions' this way. It is also possible to predict that (a) people will keep on producing such nonsense, and (b) other people will believe it. Sad, but true. AndyTheGrump (talk) 14:48, 13 March 2011 (UTC)
Interestingly, I saw an article three or four days before the earthquake (In the Post or the BBC news feed, I forget which), which talked about the supermoon and that astrologer's prediction that it would cause horrid devastation of numerous types. They had some geologist poopooing it as pseudoscience, and of course it is pseudoscience, but you know what they say - even a broken clock is right twice a day. coincidence is always highly salient, but neither of those implies causation. --Ludwigs2 09:13, 14 March 2011 (UTC)
P.s. - I just glanced through the article, and is it just me, or is most of the 'Link to natural disasters' pure OR? I think we could reduce that whole section to a single line "Links between supermoons and natural disasters such as earthquakes have been speculated, but the moon's impact on such events is generally dismissed by geologists as trivial or nonexistent." what do you think? --Ludwigs2 09:19, 14 March 2011 (UTC)
Sounds good to me - I don't think the 'generally' is really necessary though, unless someone can find a geologist who actually believes this bullpoop. AndyTheGrump (talk) 18:08, 14 March 2011 (UTC)
I disagree. The main reason why people are showing any interest in supermoons at all is due to the pseudoscientific arguments made by astrologers who are arguing that it may (of has already) influence natural disasters. A link between natural disasters and supermoons is one of the main arguments made by Richard Holle, the inventer of the term (and the hype) and so is central to the discussion of supermoons. As such, it is important to explain the empiricism surrounding such a claim. However the part about the Indian ocean tsunami can be removed if necessary. - Jessiessica (talk · contribs)
  • <sarcasm alert>Wait - ...article was created at 21:11, 11 March 2011... 21:11 11/11? I suppose you "scientists" will try to tell me that is merely coincidence? OMG, conspiracy!!!!1111111eleventyone! Hehehehe. They don't call it 'lunacy' for nothing :-) only having a bit of fun; no offence intended. I'm off to make a tin foil hat  Chzz  ►  17:55, 20 March 2011 (UTC)

fraction mystery[edit]

... at or near (within 90% of) its closest approach ...

Okay, what does "within 90%" mean? In ordinary usage, if the closest approach is N, "within 90% of N" means not less than 0.1×N and not more than 1.9×N — which would include the entire orbit of the Moon with plenty of room to spare.

... when the moon is at 100% or greater mean perigee.

This can be made into a useful definition, if we merely read it backward: a syzygy when the Earth-Moon distance is less than mean perigee. —Tamfang (talk) 00:52, 15 March 2011 (UTC)

I have emailed Richard Holle and asked him to modify his article with a less ambiguously worded definition of supermoons. Strange that in an article where he stated "When I see people misrepresenting the idea, not really understanding it at all, I feel impelled - not compelled - to try and set the record straight. Words mean things, after all . . ." he still failed to provide a meaningful definition - Jessiessica (talk · contribs)
Here is Nolle's response:
— Preceding unsigned comment added by Jessiessica (talkcontribs) 03:57, 15 March 2011 (UTC)
Can you parse that? Because I'm not at all sure what he's trying to say. JoshuaZ (talk) 04:01, 15 March 2011 (UTC)
Me neither. I was hoping some more informed people might have a better idea what he means, but I'll have a crack at it. I think it might make better sense if you reverse the numbers so one could say: "...defined as a new or full moon that occurs when the moon is within 10% of its minimum distance from the Earth.", however I don't even know where to begin with that talk of it being a "time parameter". Any insights? - Jessiessica (talk · contribs)
Because the eccentricity is less than 6%, the moon is "within 10% of its minimum distance" most of the time.
The phrase "time parameter" suggests to me that the elusive criterion is one-tenth of a month (or a demi-month?) between perigee and syzygy. —Tamfang (talk) 07:02, 15 March 2011 (UTC)
Argh. 90% of what is enough to qualify? The distance never gets as low as 0.9× mean perigee. —Tamfang (talk) 07:03, 15 March 2011 (UTC)
Nolle wrote to me that he meant 90% of the difference between extreme apogee and extreme perigee. —Tamfang (talk) 06:09, 16 March 2011 (UTC)
So the phrasing I'd use is: when the Earth-Moon distance is in the lowest tenth of its range. —Tamfang (talk) 06:25, 19 March 2011 (UTC)
There is nothing unclear about "within 90% of its closest approach". This means when it is at least 90% as close as it ever gets. It is perplexing to me how anyone could misunderstand this. 75.69.114.89 (talk) 02:06, 20 March 2011 (UTC)
It is undeniably perplexing that Nolle seems to switch back and forth between the 90% being a distance and a time parameter. - Jessiessica (talk · contribs)

Here is what Nolle has to say about the confusion over the definition of a supermoon taken from a modified form of http://www.astropro.com/features/articles/supermoon/:

Included is a long, not particularly concise explaination of his supermoon definition which you can see at the bottom of the page at the link.

All I have to say to Mr Nolle is don't blame the skeptics/critics for your sloppy use of ambigiously worded terminology. You should have provided a clear, concise definition from the outset rather than waiting 30 years to clear up any confusion. - Jessiessica (talk · contribs)

The name: Supermoon or Super Moon?[edit]

I noticed today NASA, in their video blog ScienceCast, write the name of Super Moon instead of the one word name Supermoon. Is there a reason why the article is written as one word (Supermoon)? It doesn't seem to me it should be written as one word, rather two words seem natural...

ScienceCasts: Super Moon

Thanks, -- Joel M.Chat ✐ 15:40, 18 March 2011 (UTC)

Given that the name is from astrology, not astronomy, there is unlikely to be an 'official' name at all - it comes down to which is used more often in the sources we have. 'Supermoon' certainly seems to be used quite a few. AndyTheGrump (talk) 16:09, 18 March 2011 (UTC)
Richard Nolle, who coined the term uses "SuperMoon". Because the term is used to describe a lunar event, it isn't a proper noun and as such capitalisation is inappropriate if the continuous word "supermoon" is used. As Andy said, there is no "official" term, however "supermoon" appears to be most commonly used. - Jessiessica (talk · contribs)

Extreme Supermoons[edit]

About the section: "Dates of supermoons between 1950 and 2050"

The article has a list of past and predicted extreme supermoons but no definition of an "extreme supermoon".

?? Wanderer57 (talk) 19:18, 19 March 2011 (UTC)

In the referenced tables there is the following explanation...
"X = EXTREME SUPERMOON (MOON AT 100% OR GREATER MEAN PERIGEE)"
Sounds again like (deliberately?) confused and confusing use of astronomical terms by an astrologer. HiLo48 (talk) 19:50, 19 March 2011 (UTC)
From my email exchange with him, it's clear to me that Nolle is using a scale on which "0%" is the mean apogee distance and "100%" is the mean perigee distance. It's not as transparent as one would prefer, but I wouldn't call it "deliberately confused and confusing". —Tamfang (talk) 21:13, 19 March 2011 (UTC)
It's bad science. It just pushes all of this stuff further into the realm of Pseudoscience HiLo48 (talk) 21:19, 19 March 2011 (UTC)
What's bad science — Raising the question whether perigee+syzygy has interesting effects? Inventing terminology? Failing to bury the matter when it's found that there is no significant effect? —Tamfang (talk) 21:25, 19 March 2011 (UTC)
I did originally include Nolle's definition but it was removed for the above-mentioned reasons. The reason why I included dates of extreme supermoons only is because there are just too many supermoons to list with an average of 5 a year. The links provided lead to the dates of the rest of the supermoons. - Jessiessica (talk · contribs)

syzygy[edit]

One well-meaning editor recently removed the tidal effect of syzygy because it was not supported by a reference about the tidal effect of perigee! See Tide#Range variation: springs and neaps. —Tamfang (talk) 21:15, 19 March 2011 (UTC)

Here is astronomer Phil Plait's quote addressing the tidal effect at perigee:
- Jessiessica (talk · contribs)
50%? Holy cow, amazing. If this crackpot astrology stuff were true then the moon and sun wouldn't have to be perfectly (and I use that term loosely) aligned to create disasters, they could be offset by quite a bit. 'Kinda' aligned sun and moon happens quite often.98.165.15.98 (talk) 03:08, 20 March 2011 (UTC)

Earth-moon distance range[edit]

Quoting the article: "The Moon's distance varies each month between approximately 354,000 km (220,000 mi) and 410,000 km (254,000 mi) due to its elliptical orbit around Earth.[1][2]"

This statement is straightforward and is about astronomy, not astrology. The part that bothers me are the two references.

Please will someone provide a reputable astronomical source for this sentence? It would be comforting to have at least one sentence in the article on solid ground.

Thanks, Wanderer57 (talk) 00:35, 20 March 2011 (UTC)

Try the wikipedia article on the moon. If wikipedia cannot source itself then something's horribly wrong.98.165.15.98 (talk) 03:09, 20 March 2011 (UTC)
Oddly enough, Wikipedia cannot source itself. "The threshold for inclusion in Wikipedia is verifiability, not truth; that is, whether readers can check that material in Wikipedia has already been published by a reliable source." If an article in W can be a source for another article, one can end up in a situation where (for example) article A is a source for article B, and article B for article C, and article C for article A, and there is no outside source at all. Hence the rule that a source must be outside Wikipedia. Wanderer57 (talk) 16:26, 20 March 2011 (UTC)
Wikipedia's got an article on moon's perigee and apogee distances, article's "MOON", if it's wrong someone should change it. Or we can have 2 conflicting numbers.98.165.15.98 (talk) 10:31, 22 March 2011 (UTC)
I wasn't suggesting that our Moon article is incorrect. "Do not use Wikipedia as a source" is a Wikipedia rule. See Wikipedia as a source. Wanderer57 (talk) 12:24, 22 March 2011 (UTC)
Is astronomer Phil Plait (ref [1]) not a reliable source on astronomy? - Jessiessica (talk · contribs)
No he's not reliable because the tidal forces are not 50% greater at perigee.98.165.15.98 (talk) 03:10, 20 March 2011 (UTC)
I suppose that ad hominem attack trumps all his work as an astronomer over the years. - Jessiessica (talk · contribs)
I'm sorry for any misunderstanding I caused. My request for another source for the range of the moon-earth distance was not intended to reflect on the reputation of Phil Plait or anyone else. It seemed to me that moon-earth distance must be well-documented in "standard reference works" about astronomy. I think it would be reassuring to readers like myself, coming to this topic without much background, to have a older and very authoritative source rather than an article just recently created as part of the discussion about this peculiar theory about the earthquake. Wanderer57 (talk) 16:51, 20 March 2011 (UTC)

Wow. Who screwed up the minimum earth-moon distance? Someone lopped off a zero from the miles and from the kilometers. Isn't anyone monitoring the article? The quote of the article above is no longer accurate! — Preceding unsigned comment added by 173.195.10.166 (talk) 01:18, 6 May 2012 (UTC)

Who screwed up? Could have been any of the scientifically illiterate nutters who think this topic, with this particular name, is of any significance at all. (You can probably tell that I regard this as more as a psychological phenomenon among the ignorant than of much scientific importance.) HiLo48 (talk) 01:25, 6 May 2012 (UTC)

Whatever the true value is, I have made what was incorrectly stated an order of magnitude more accurate by restoring the zero. I think it lost the zero between yesterday and today. When I read it yesterday I think it was correct. — Preceding unsigned comment added by 173.195.10.166 (talk) 01:29, 6 May 2012 (UTC)

Brightness and gravitation[edit]

I noticed there's no calculation for the increase in brightness (during full moon) and increase in gravitational force. Both follow an inverse-square law, so the results will be the same: I get an increase of 10% during supermoon compared to average, and 16% compared to, um, infinumoon. This seems way higher than I would have expected for a tidally-locked-yet-not-geocentric object, so can somebody verify this? SamuelRiv (talk) 04:32, 20 March 2011 (UTC)

Tide follows an inverse-cube law (because it's about the difference in gravitational force on the near and far points of the Earth, not about the force itself). Using the numbers in Orbit of the Moon, I get a ratio of 1.39 between perigee and apogee. —Tamfang (talk) 04:44, 20 March 2011 (UTC)
Good point, *headslap*, and I get the same ratio, which means the tides yesterday would be 18% larger than the mean for a full moon, and 39% larger than at apogee, but of course saying the tides are x higher can be misleading because of the topography of the oceans. And my original calculation is wrong (I forgot to square it) - the moon was 12% brighter than average and 24% brighter than at apogee. Those results are confirmed by a couple other blogs, so I'll pop that in. SamuelRiv (talk) 17:29, 20 March 2011 (UTC)

The moon In noted on 26,27ths of September 2007 was 60-70% bigger than what I saw yesterday. why aren't those called supermoons. http://www.flickr.com/photos/challiyan/5540532572/ --Challiyan (talk) 10:39, 20 March 2011 (UTC)

If you mean the moon in 2007 was 70% of the size or brightness you saw yesterday, that may be correct. If you can give us two photographs taken with the same lens from the same site in 2007 and yesterday, or with a relative object (like a skyscraper) in view, then we might be able to give an accurate measurement and figure out what's up. SamuelRiv (talk) 17:29, 20 March 2011 (UTC)

Wow. Who screwed up the minimum earth-moon distance? Someone lopped off a zero from the miles and from the kilometers. Isn't anyone monitoring the article? The quote of the article above is no longer accurate! — Preceding unsigned comment added by 173.195.10.166 (talk) 01:15, 6 May 2012 (UTC)

Brightness is NOT the same as gravitation, because the moon is not a perfect diffuse reflector. The moon is somewhat specularly reflective, like Scotchlite or retroreflectors, and that makes it noticably brighter on axis with the sun and the earth. The reason is that meteoroid impact throws out tiny balls of melted stuff, which turns into microscopic glassy balls (like Scotchlite!) and solidifies before it slowly comes back down.

Combine the sun-earth-moon angular lineup and nearness to the ecliptic plane (resulting in an annular solar eclipse on May 20!) with the inverse-square perigee effect, and the moon becomes significantly brighter. That results in better night-time landscape photography, you can add an f-stop or two. Astronomical seeing is worse. Web references on my own wiki page: [[2]] . I study this because it affects astronomy, nocturnal predator-prey relationships, and coral spawning(!) KeithLofstrom (talk) 20:52, 4 May 2012 (UTC)

Perigee-syzyrgy[edit]

I've been trying to figure out how often the perigee-syzyrgy happens, but I can't seem to find any real information on it anywhere here or elsewhere on the Internet. Anybody have more info on this? I think this would be a good thing to have in the article to help clear up people's misconceptions. --Flib (talk) 14:10, 20 March 2011 (UTC)

How often it 'happens' will depend on your definition of how closely together the two events need to be to be considered 'at the same time' etc - any answer is going to be rather arbitrary. AndyTheGrump (talk) 15:59, 20 March 2011 (UTC)
If you use the same criteria as Nolle does for extreme supermoons, you'll find ther is no obvious pattern to their frequency. There have been 14 extreme supermoons since 1900 but they don't occur at regular intervals. For example there were 4 supermoons between 1900 and 1970, and then 3 in a space of only 3 years between 1972 and 1975.- Jessiessica (talk · contribs)

Astrology, really?[edit]

I'm wanting to change the intro to this article from "In astrology" to "In astronomy." But as I started to edit, it said not to call it astronomy, because the term "supermoon" was coined by an astrologer. The definition section tells that astronomers don't widely accept the term, but that doesn't mean it applies to the astrology (not astronomy) theme. This is an astronomy (not astrology) topic. QQQ (talk) 15:44, 20 March 2011 (UTC)

Not really - astronomers neither use the term 'Supermoon', nor attach any particular significance to it. AndyTheGrump (talk) 15:54, 20 March 2011 (UTC)
But they do use the other term, correct? "Supermoon" is also the term used in news broadcasts, including NASA. The article does not discuss astrology, but astronomy, so there is no need to mention astrology in the lede. If astrology is relevant to the naming, it can be mentioned there, say by noting that the coiner is an astrologist. Per Wikipedia:Fringe_theories#Pseudoscience, there's no reason to give astrology parity here. — kwami (talk) 20:46, 20 March 2011 (UTC)
The truth is astronomers rarely even use the term perigee-syzygy (google it), which just goes to show how important such an event is to them. Supermoons/perigee-syzygys are not even on the astronomical radar because the real difference between a perigee and a supermoon is only ruled by an arbitrary criteria imposed by astrologer Richard Nolle. - Jessiessica (talk · contribs)
The current content of the article suggests that the only connection with astrology is Richard Nolle, who coined the word. What did he himself say about it? The word sounds to me more like a handy tabloid headline word than an astrological term. But surely it is primarily a scientific topic, whether or not the article properly reflects that? Is most or all of the content covered elsewhere by "perigee"? If so, then maybe a merge is required. Unless its significance for astrology can be established, I would propose to delete all the links/tags to astrology. I don't see any links to Dubliners in the article for Quark. Martinevans123 (talk) 17:50, 22 March 2011 (UTC)

File:Perigee Moon 19 March 2011 Lincoln Memorial.jpg[edit]

Is this a fake photo? Or is Lincoln Memorial a micro-architecture? The moon in Beijing 5 min ago is not as big as even one-fourth that moon. ––虞海 (Yú Hǎi) 16:00, 20 March 2011 (UTC)

It's as big as a stair window (0.5m x 0.5m) 50 meters from what I saw it. ––虞海 (Yú Hǎi) 16:03, 20 March 2011 (UTC)
The photo was taken with a zoom or telephoto lens, by the look of it - the building is further away than it seems, making the moon look bigger. AndyTheGrump (talk) 17:32, 20 March 2011 (UTC)
See also Moon illusion. (I don't know if that helps, exactly - but I think it is related)  Chzz  ►  17:35, 20 March 2011 (UTC)
The photo was taken with a 400mm telephoto lens and the image was probably cropped too. Bubba73 You talkin' to me? 20:29, 20 March 2011 (UTC)
See this, for example. Bubba73 You talkin' to me? 23:55, 20 March 2011 (UTC)
In other words, they "cheated" by using a telescope. They really need to make that clearer on APotD. SamuelRiv (talk) 12:40, 21 March 2011 (UTC)
How is that cheating? It is just a standard camera lens. That is the perspective you have if you are a long way away from the Lincolm Memorial. Bubba73 You talkin' to me? 15:57, 21 March 2011 (UTC)

Does anyone else think the new pic titled "A photograph taken in March 19, 2011 showing supermoon at Ambon's beach in Indonesia." looks totally fake? Perhaps we should just stick to Supermoon_comparison.jpg‎, which gives the best idea of the actual size difference. Jessiessica (talk) 23:10, 25 March 2011 (UTC)

Yes, Jess, I fully agree, it does look fake. The image was posted by a new editor, who gives no name, as a personal creation. It's difficult to know, isn't it? I think we should certainly stick with the comparson image that does a very good job. But I'd welcome other images, perhaps in a gallery, to provide local context and to show that it is a global phenomenon. And it should look bigger by exactly the same amount everyehere, shouldn't it? Martinevans123 (talk) 15:07, 26 March 2011 (UTC)

The discussion about the picture being fake or not is not relevant. Choosing the appropriate telephoto lens, the place where you stand, and, most importantly, the foreground object against which to take a photo of the Moon, will make it appear as big or as small as one wishes. Anyway, one cannot honestly expect to assess the size of an object when the visual comparison is done against another object at a different distance from the observer as the first one. Unless, of course, you have all the distance data and are ready to do all the calculations... On a second thought... we could say that this type of photographs is deliberately misleading. They carry no other information than that the photographer has some notions about framing and exposure, that the Moon is round and that he has travelled to interesting places. Rui — Preceding unsigned comment added by 213.58.233.135 (talk) 18:07, 11 September 2014 (UTC)

Perigee[edit]

This isn't actually perigee (not exact enough), it's a near minimum perigee, isn't it? Doesn't that affect the term "perigee-syzygy"? 184.144.166.85 (talk) 12:26, 21 March 2011 (UTC)

It is mentioned in the definition section that the two don't necessarily coincide perfectly each time. The point of supermoon is the point of perigee with the point of syzygy varying from the same time (extreme supermoon) to 12 hours away (regular supermoon). This is mentioned in the definition section. - Jessiessica (talk · contribs)

Utterly unscientific article[edit]

From Peter Cadogan, "The Moon, our sister planet" (Cambridge University Press, 1981), Ronaldo Rogério de Freitas Mourão, "Encyclopedic Dictionary of Astronomy and Astronautics" (CNPq, 1987), etc:

Synodic revolution: 29,23 days.

Sidereal revolution: 27,32 days.

Draconic or nodic revolution: 27,21 days.

Tropical lunar month: 27,32 days.

Anomalistic revolution: 27,55 days.

Regression of line of nodes or eclipse year: 346,62 days.

Rotation of line of apsides: 8,85 years.

Rotation of line of nodes or precession: 18,61 years.

Octaeteris cycle: 8,0 years.

Metonic cycle: 19,0 years.

Saros cycle: 18,03 years.


From various popular media sources:

Supermoon period: "nearly 20 years", "about 18 years", "when it is 90 % from perigee", etc.


NASA has a definition of the phenomenon, sort of:

"Footnote: Less-perfect perigee moons occur more often. In 2008, for instance, there was a full Moon four hours from perigee. Many observers thought that one looked great, so the one-hour perigee moon of 2011 should be a real crowd pleaser."


The periods mentioned on top were discovered by the Great Astronomers of Antiquity, such as Aristarchus of Samos, Hipparchus and Claudius Ptolemy.

The supermoon period was invented by the Great Astrologers of Present-Day Era, such as Richard Nolle, and was picked up by the popular press, I presume to NASA webmasters' great exasperation. Aldo L (talk) 17:31, 21 March 2011 (UTC)

Can we please use periods instead of commas to denote fractions?98.165.15.98 (talk) 10:26, 22 March 2011 (UTC)
Aldo L: It is unclear to me if you are criticizing the article itself or the topic, with the title you gave to this section.
I don't see the relevance of the statistics about the duration of various cycles to the topic. Please will you be more specific?
Thanks, Wanderer57 (talk) 19:42, 21 March 2011 (UTC)
Hello, thanks for following up. On 27 August 2003 Mars was in a very similar situation: at opposition near its periapsis. It also made a lot of press but we don't have an article about that, just one paragraph plus one sentence, in our Wiki article about Mars. Why just that? Because this is not a specific cycle or a specific periodicity, nor it's a component of the celestial mechanics of the body. It is just an ephemeris position. All the hype about "supermoon" this and "supermoon" that is because some charlatan decided to attract attention. Of course I enjoyed watching the moon last night, but it was the same phenomenon that I have observed several times in all these years of amateur astronomy: the full moon near perigee. Nothing else. I don't see the point of a Wikipedia article. A paragraph in some other article about the Moon will suffice. Aldo L (talk) 02:57, 22 March 2011 (UTC)
You are right - from the scientific perspective, there is no justification for this article. But you could say that about many Wikipedia articles - perhaps most. Biographies of Hollywood stars, and articles about Japanese manga characters aren't science either. Rightly or wrongly, Wikipedia has such articles, and strives to get the facts (such as they are) right about such topics too. The 'Supermoon' phenomenon is astrological hokum, but it is hokum that a lot of people seem to have given credence to - at least we can show that this is hokum, with an article that explains why. Maybe in the process, we might get one or two readers interested in real science, which would be no bad thing. AndyTheGrump (talk) 03:34, 22 March 2011 (UTC)
OK, I see your point. Let's make this clear in the introduction to the article, so readers will be warned. Aldo L (talk) 16:15, 22 March 2011 (UTC)

"a close approach"[edit]

First sentence of this article:

"A perigee-syzygy of the Earth-Moon-Sun system or "supermoon" is a full or new moon that coincides with a close approach by the Moon to the Earth."

As far as I can figure, the criteron of "closeness" described in the article (and discussed above) would include any case where the distance was 5 or 6% less than the average earth-moon distance. Calling this a "close approach" is stretching the meaning of "close" beyond its breaking point IMO.

I suggest an alternate wording: "A perigee-syzygy of the Earth-Moon-Sun system or "supermoon" is a full or new moon that occurs when the Moon is at least 6% closer than average to the Earth."

Wanderer57 (talk) 20:20, 21 March 2011 (UTC)

Where did you get the 5-6% figure from? The reason why we do not go into detail in the definition is that the definition is quite complicated and confusing. Any attempt to explain it in 1 sentence will only result in ambiguous/arbitrary words. i.e. closer than what? The average Earth-Moon distance? Because a supermoon is greater than 6% closer than the average Earth-Moon distance. Closer than the average perigee difference? You see my point. This is why there is a whole section on the definition. Perhaps we can do better in that 1 sentence, but I don't see how 5-6% is accurate. - Jessiessica (talk · contribs)
Thank you. I do see your point. It is very difficult to be precise about something when the person who defined it was so extraordinarily careless in their definition.
The 5-6% "statistic" was obtained as follows. I went to Nolles' webpage where he has apogee and perigee distances for the year 2011. The highest apogee is 406,655 and the lowest perigee is 356,577. From these numbers, Nolles calculates the "closer distance below which a moon may qualify as a supermoon" (my terminology, not his) as 361,585 [356,577 plus 10% of the difference (406,665 - 356,577)] OR 406,665 less 90% of the difference.
Based on this, I believe Nolles is saying in effect that a supermoon is a full or new moon that occurs when the Moon is 361,585 kilometres or less from the Earth.
I then looked up the average Earth-Moon distance. For simplicity I went according to our article Moon. The semi-major axis is 384,399 km, essentially the same as the average of the "apogee" and the "perigee", 384,400 km.
361,585 is 5.93% less than 384,400. Or rounded off, 6%.
With this information, the definition of a supermoon can be expressed as "a full or new moon that occurs when the Moon is at least 6% closer than average to the earth."
A more felicitous way of expressing this might be as "a full or new moon that occurs when the Moon is closer than 94% of its average distance from the earth."
Wanderer57 (talk) 00:42, 22 March 2011 (UTC)

Run aground[edit]

The last two edits to this topic seem perfectly fair. The source given here indeed offers only observational evidence. But yes, I would argue that this statement does deserve to be kept in the article. One is left wondering, however, what exactly would constitute "scientific evidence". Surely if sandbanks not normally visible become visible, this suggests the tide is very low. Could this not be easily corroborated by checking tide minima at the agreed measuring places? Or putting the question the other way round - what else could explain the appearance of these sandbanks? Doesn't five ships at the same time sound a bit more than mere coincidence? Reading the reference by Phil Plait in Discover Magazine, it seems like a perfectly reasonable association between moon proximity and navigational difficultly has been”tainted” in some way by a coincidental earthquake and tsunami? Martinevans123 (talk) 13:13, 23 March 2011 (UTC)

Yes. The Sun-Moon-Earth alignment and the Moon distance both affect the tides in a way that has been known for some centuries. The topic is covered in both Tide and Moon. We are not likely to do as well here and it would be better to refer readers to those articles IMO.
The tide tables for the Soylent do indeed show a large range of tides around March 19 (both before and after, it is not a one-day thing.) What seems odd is that the Captains who ran vessels aground apparently did not check the tide tables. They will have some spaining to do.
Rather than redirect "Perigee-syzygy" to "Supermoon", I think it would be better to redirect "Supermoon" to a "Perigee-syzygy" article. This would give a reader who looks up supermoon a scientifically more credible name.
Wanderer57 (talk) 19:22, 23 March 2011 (UTC)
Given that the tides were predicted, the reason for the groundings was poor navigation, not the "mystical" Supermoon. My point being that it WASN'T mystical. That addition should be removed. HiLo48 (talk) 19:37, 23 March 2011 (UTC)
Perhaps Captains learn to allow for a typical Spring Tide and feel they need not always check their tables? But if something, like a sandbank, is generally hidden, even at the lowest typical tide, it's hard to learn when exactly it will appear? or even pose a greater hidden risk. Especially with pehaps many years between similar lunar events. But yes, if the tide tables accurately take account of the Perigee-syzygy, some failure of tables and depth charts seems likely. But even with depth charts, I'd guess that the sands in The Solent are constantly shifting. The second point raised by Wanderer57 poses a larger question. I'd not be unhappy to see Supermoon as a sub-section within Perigee-syzygy. Thanks. Martinevans123 (talk) 19:41, 23 March 2011 (UTC)

There is a perigee article, and a syzygy article, but no perigee-syzygy article. While some would probably argue that perhaps we should create one, I think that will only give more scientific credence to a pseudoscientific concept. I've looked, and I could only find 1 incidence of a scientist using the term perigee-syzygy. It is an event that astronomers and other scientists really pay no heed to. Nobody even gave a rat's about perigee-syzygys until this whole supermoon business started. If we created a perigee-syzygy article, people may assume that supermoons are based on a scientific concept when they're really not. While we could do better, I think this article does a fair job of presenting evidence to suggest that supermoons are pseudoscience. - Jessiessica (talk · contribs)

"Ridiculousness"?, maybe so. But not as ridiculous as, say, this: newspaper headline in an article. And even if ridiculous, still notable because of the perception of the event by the general public. I have seen no evidince that the claim has been proven either way. So unless, or until, that happens, perhaps a vote can be taken? I think you are probably right out "pseudoscience" - in fact this would seem to bolster your case. Thanks. Martinevans123 (talk) 13:17, 24 March 2011 (UTC)
  • Keep: this is from a perfectly WP:RS and is evidence of public interest in the phenomenanon. It should be clearly stated that there is no scientific proof.

Wait a minute[edit]

According to the information I can find, the Japan earthquake was on March 11, one day before the moon was at first quarter. The moon distance must have been somewhere in its mid-range then because it was at apogee on March 6 and perigee on March 19.

That is about as far from a "supermoon" as one can get, isn't it? Wanderer57 (talk) 19:34, 23 March 2011 (UTC)

You're absolutely right. Any claimed connection of the "supermoon" with the Japanese earthquake is total rubbish. It shows that astrologers are very unscientific people, or hope that their audience is. HiLo48 (talk) 19:39, 23 March 2011 (UTC)
Or maybe it shows that the popular press is even more unscientific than astrologers? Would astrologers (even) claim a physical cause-effect relationship (i.e. gravitational pull), or merely a mystical astrological one? Martinevans123 (talk) 13:21, 24 March 2011 (UTC)

Evidence that earthquakes are no more likely to occur around the time of an earthquake than by chance[edit]

Wanting to get a clearer picture of the data, I decided to look at the dates of all large-scale earthquakes (8.0 magnitude and greater) and supermoons since 1900 to see whether earthquakes occur at at a greater frequency than we would expect by pure chance around the time of supermoons:

There are on average 5 supermoons a year. A criteria of +/- 3 days gives a 7 day window, meaning that there would be approximately 35 days in the year that the Earth is particularly susceptible to the forces of supermoons. This equates to 10% of the year. It follows that if earthquakes occur at random intervals, they would have a probability of occurring by chance within the supermoon effect window 10% of the time.
Between 1900 and today there have been 87 earthquakes with magnitudes of 8.0 or greater. If supermoons have a real, measurable effect, we should expect more than 10% of these earthquakes to have fallen within +/- 3 days of a supermoon. Since 1900, 6 earthquakes of this magnitude have fallen within this window, which is just under 7% of all such earthquakes, and less than would be expected by pure chance.

These findings, as well as a look at larger windows of within 1 and 2 weeks (for the goalpost movers) are presented in my blog post: http://skepticahome.blogspot.com/2011/03/can-supermoons-effect-earthquakes.html

I believe this is probably the most compelling evidence available that specifically supermoons (not just general lunar activity measured indirectly by tidal forces) do not have any measurable effect on major earthquakes, however because blog posts are generally not accepted as reliable recources on wikipedia, there seems to be no way to present it here short of explaining it in full. What does everyone think? Unnecessary? - Jessiessica (talk · contribs)

Unfortunately it's a deeper analysis than should be put directly in the article or made immediately obvious. If you were to try to convey that information, you would post the table in the article and allow the reader to see clearly the lack of correlation.
But the cruddy logic of the astrologers can be made apparent in much simpler ways -- for example, the article can point out that the increase in tidal force is the same at apogee regardless of whether or not the moon is full at the time (the position of the sun is important, but then the total force is max at a new moon).
I personally object to your method of analysis being inadequate to fully debunk the idea -- I would be more comfortable in personally crediting you if you got the sun and moon positions (or just total grav/tidal force calculation) at all earthquakes that were analyzed, then looked from there for correlations, including during apogee moons that were not supermoons.
In short, keep blogging, and your notes are welcome here.

Proposed replacement section for 'Effect on Tides'[edit]

The 'Effect on tides' section has problems IMO. Below is the section as it is, with my comments in paren. Below that is my suggested replacement section. (I left out the links and refs to make this easier to edit.)


The combined effect of the Sun and Moon on the Earth's oceans, the tide, is greatest when the Moon is either new or full. At lunar perigee the tidal force is even stronger, resulting in larger high and low tides on average, but even at its most powerful this force is still weak. ("lunar perigee" - technical term, "even stronger", "most powerful", "still weak" - unnecessarily confusing words make this sentence hard to read.)

As the tidal force follows an inverse-cube law, that force is 18% greater than average. However, because the actual amplitude of tides varies around the world, this may not translate into a direct effect. (This paragraph is hard to follow and I don't think it says anything useful.)

It has been argued that the supermoon of 19 March 2011 was responsible for the grounding of five ships in the Solent in the UK, however such claims are not supported by scientific evidence. ("was responsible" is ambiguous. If "was responsible" means "was the sole cause", then no. There were multiple causes. But the tide range was high around then and that is certainly one of the causes of groundings. And there is certainly scientific evidence that the position of moon & sun affects the tides. Saying "not supported by scientific evidence" here puts the article on very weak ground.)


Suggested replacement section:

The gravitational pulls of the Sun and Moon on the Earth's oceans cause the tides. The effect is greatest when the Sun, Moon and Earth are approximately aligned. That is, at full moon and new moon.

When the Moon is relatively close to the earth (at perigee), its gravitational pull is slightly stronger.

When a perigee COINCIDES with a full or new moon (i.e., a perigee-syzygy or supermoon), the effects combine, resulting in somewhat higher high tides and lower low tides.

During the lower than usual low tide on 19 March 2011, five vessels ran aground in The Solent in the UK. The Solent is quite shallow and notoriously difficult to navigate because of complex tidal currents.

Wanderer57 (talk) 15:33, 24 March 2011 (UTC)

There is scientific evidence that the moon affects the tides, however this particular claim does not look at the frequency that this sort of event (i.e. running aground) happens outside of supermoon. Were there such reports from other locations? Has this happened during other extreme supermoons? Is this effect specific to supermoons or does it generalise to perigees? Could there be other possible causes? As far as we know the suggestion that the supermoon had any influence it is just a post hoc ergo proptor hoc logical fallacy based on an anomaly, and without more evidence to suggest otherwise I hardly think it even deserves a mention in the article.
The article used to say "but even at its most powerful this force is still considerably weak.", but the word "considerably" was deleted as a weasel word, just as the word "somewhat" probably would be in your suggestion.
Also, hasn't perigee been defined enough times in the article? - Jessiessica (talk · contribs)
Thank you Jessiessica. (What a great name.) Any comments from other editors? For example, does anyone other than I think we would be better off without the middle paragraph? (i.e., "As the tidal force follows an inverse-cube law...") Wanderer57 (talk) 20:18, 25 March 2011 (UTC)
I think that what you have suggesred is quite good. But I'd certainly agree about responsibility. Maybe we should stick with blame as used in the source and suitably non-scientific? But that's if we want to keep unscientific stuff in what appears to be a scientific article. (By Jess's logic, the more rubbish the better? but please vote - I'll by happy to accept consensus). One problem with your three paragraphs is that they look a bit like a syllogism, or possibly even something else much less desirable. Martinevans123 (talk) 20:45, 25 March 2011 (UTC)
When we added the "19% stronger tidal force, 13% brighter than average" thing, it was because people were asking over and over again, here and on ref desk, "how much brighter, how much stronger than normal". That's why numerical information needs to stay in the article. To put it more precisely:
At the nearest point in its orbit, the Moon is about 6% closer to Earth than average. A full moon at this point is then be up to 13% brighter than average.
If you details on the calculation, just ask, but it's very straightforward and the numbers are repeated on any astronomy blog that deals with this topic.
Also, someone asked earlier about how much stronger the tidal forces are at full moon when both the Moon and Sun are at perigee. It's 12% stronger than in an average spring tide. SamuelRiv (talk) 17:59, 6 May 2012 (UTC)

cleaned up a bit[edit]

I cleaned up a section that may be of interest to some:

[3].

I don't think we should be using a webpage as a major source. Nor should we be going on extensive debunking of crazy ideas (see WP:NOR). Nor should we be including irrelevant commentary about tides and earthquakes which is wholly incidental to this subject.

Hudn12 (talk) 18:19, 7 May 2012 (UTC)

Additionally, I removed a lot of the astrological nattering: [4]. I think since the original term "SuperMoon" was coined by an astrologer, we can keep that in here, but the rest of the kowtowing to pseudoscience has to go. This is an encyclopedia for facts, not for the opinions of one astrologer. Hudn12 (talk) 18:29, 7 May 2012 (UTC)

Contradiction[edit]

There are two statements in this article, which are contradictive:

Section Definition:

"According to NASA, a full moon at perigee is up to 14% larger and 30% brighter than one at its furthest point (apogee)."

Subtitle second picture:

"It was about 20 percent brighter and 15 percent bigger than a regular full moon."

A regular full moon is nearer to the earth and thereby greater than a moon at its furthest point. So one the given percentage rates can't be wright. — Preceding unsigned comment added by 92.205.102.82 (talk) 11:28, 28 April 2013 (UTC)

Yes - it appears that the "than apogee" has gotten dropped and replaced by "than normal/regular/other full moons" in various sources - sadly including this tweet from @Nasa on 2014/Aug/10: "Watch the skies tonight for a #supermoon: 14% closer & 30% brighter than other full moons." - not technically incorrect, since those near apogee are indeed "other" full moons, but gives the impression that the comparison is with characteristic/average full moons. MistySpock (talk) 21:11, 10 August 2014 (UTC)

Update - a few hours later, perhaps in response to my or other twitter responses, an unobjectionable tweet was issued: "Look up! Tonight's #supermoon appears larger & brighter than any other full moon this year." MistySpock (talk) 13:35, 11 August 2014 (UTC)

http://web.archive.org/web/20120507035348/http://science.nasa.gov/science-news/science-at-nasa/2011/16mar_supermoon/

Sigh - caption for a (great) photo in The Guardian, which I saw shared on Facebook. "On 9 September the moon may appear 14% larger and 30% brighter as it comes closer than usual to the Earth" I tweeted a brief correction just now, although the phrasing here is a bit ambiguous. http://www.theguardian.com/science/2014/sep/09/-sp-10-things-you-should-know-about-the-supermoon MistySpock (talk) 03:32, 10 September 2014 (UTC)

I agree - A misinformed and inconsistent article - Contradictions not editable (?)[edit]

A moment's thought reveals mathematical inconsistencies in this article. Perhaps the terminology (apogee isn't a regular moon) needs to be explained to the article's original authors, along with some basic science (the moon doesn't actually get bigger). According to one post on the NASA web site, when perigee occurs around its full or new phase ("supermoon" defintion), the moon appears larger by "up to 14%" than when at an apogee occuring close to a full or new moon. The cited NASA article is clear in that regard, and another NASA web page describes that the maximum difference in perceived size between perigee-syzygy and apogee-syzygy "can be just over 10%". But the text associated with the middle of three moon images in this article disagrees entirely with NASA (and is apparently not editable within Wikipedia). It has four errors within this brief clause alone:

"[The moon on 19 March 2011] was about 20 percent brighter and 15 percent bigger than a regular full moon."
  1. Image caption claims the moon that day was 15% larger, whereas NASA's claim for maximum difference is 14%.
  2. The moon wasn't larger on that day, it was nearer to Earth, and just appeared to be larger.
  3. The NASA statement of up to 14% larger at perigee, is compared to a full moon at apogee - not to a regular full moon (which is not defined, perhaps when at medium orbital distance).
  4. The [relative] brightness and [perceived] size components that are ascribed to the supermoon effect, result from the actual distance (and moon phase) in direct mathematical relationships. It cannot simultaneously be at (or exceed) the extreme of perceived size, but only be much less than the extreme relative brightness.

I see no reference or statement that these physical angular differences are almost always too small to notice unless using precise measuring tools such as a theodolite or a direct photographic comparison (such as the first image). It may also be instructive to point out that according to pseudoscience and Richard Nolle's [intended] definition (syzygy coinciding with a point on the orbital distance v. time curve within 90% of perigee), there is a Supermoon every three or four full moons (that is every 3-4 months of every year), and even a much stricter interpretation (perigee within an hour of syzygy) provides for a Supermoon every 14 months.
Given the small differences and human difficulty in quantitative estimates of angular size, the Supermoon Effect is fueled by a related illusion, but in this article, there are no references whatsoever to recent developments in the study of the directly related (and probably here causal) visual phenomenon known as the Moon Illusion. This is directly relevant to the Supermoon Effect, because the latter through media hype is likely purposefully viewed in the evening, which for a full or new moon, places it near the horizon. The Moon Illusion, although not physically real, plays a much greater role in our lunar size perceptions than the almost negligible actual increase in angular size from the Supermoon Effect. This is the illusion (not the reality) of an increase in angular size when viewing any full moon near the horizon (regardless of "supermoon orbital phase"), and is significantly enhanced in the presence of distance cues subtending less of an arc than the moon itself (such as a view of the moon behind thin trees). That effect is certainly real and I believe known by nearly everybody. For several millennia, the Moon Illusion has been studied by actual scientists and philosophers (natural or otherwise), such as Ptolemy, Aristotle, Ibn-al-Haytham, Roger Bacon, Shopenhauer, Kant and recent contributions most notably from psychology professor emeritus Don McCready), culminating in this extensive explanation of the cause of the Moon Illusion, and hence of the hype and confirmation bias associated with the Supermoon Effect. It includes discussion of the discovery in 2006 that various sizes of retinal images in perception illusions does not correspond exactly to the various sizes of associated neural activity areas (measured by fMRI) in the primary visual cortex V1 region, but that the illusion has already become the reality upon first entering the brain for subsequent processing. It is why the related perspective observation that follows is seen as humourously surreal rather than an easily-made mistake:

"Why do they always put the small cows in the far field". - Ardal O'Hanlon as Dougal McGuire in Father Ted, Season 2, Episode 1.

Less well-known but actually long well-established (Washburn, 1894) is the associated counter-phenomenon that the Moon Illusion and hence the Supermoon Effect is reversed when bending over and viewing the moon upside down. With that view, the moon will appear to be smaller than usual when near the horizon, even on Supermoon Day.

As of late on Saturday 22 June 2013, (Supermoon Eve and anniversary of Galileo's 1633 forced recantation), this article was quoted (misquoted) by the Associated Press who confused a maximum limit on apparent size increase of 14% with tomorrow's Supermoon (a 6% increase in angular size). For all its brevity, this is close to being the worst scientific article on Wikipedia that I can recall. I still wouldn't be proud of this article if I held the belief that my future life and personal traits are determined by past arrangements of celestial bodies. ChrisJBenson (talk) 10:15, 23 June 2013 (UTC)

I also think the article should clarify what is meant by "bigger". Specifically, is it referring to the apparent surface area or radius/diameter? The main text of the NASA article also uses "bigger", but an image caption says "wider", which implies it's a comparison of perceived diameter.69.81.62.54 (talk) 12:11, 14 July 2014 (UTC)

What to do[edit]

The article should be edited to reflect what it's sources say. Sources from related articles could be consulted and added (including those linked from {{The Moon}} and the categories on the article). New sources that meet WP:RS and the other {{Wikipedia_policies_and_guidelines}} could be added. Until then, the contradictions could be labelled with {{Contradiction-inline}} and {{Inconsistent}}. — Lentower (talk) 13:06, 14 July 2014 (UTC)

is syzygy-perigee specific enough?[edit]

As far as I understand it, a syzygy-perigee could also be new moon at perigee. Therefore, not all syzygys are supermoons, and the 'technical' term is actually more vague than the colloquial. Perhaps 'jargonization' would be a better descriptor? Qe2eqe (talk) 04:54, 23 June 2013 (UTC)

My understanding is that a Supermoon may indeed be a new moon (NASA certainly think so). I wanted to say "in its formal definition", but only formal by comparison with tabloid nonsense. ChrisJBenson (talk) 19:47, 23 June 2013 (UTC)
Isn't the word "syzygy" used only loosely to describe this phenomena? It's not a perfect sun-earth-moon alignment, so it isn't "technically" a syzygy; that's just the word used by people who aren't sure what to call it. Really, the most specific way to classify this event is by calling it a "supermoon", so any other "technical" term (especially "syzygy") is unnecessary and possibly wrong.
Syzygy does not imply an exactly straight line. It does, however, encompass both full and new moons. So unless you can think of another term that does that, then this one is fine, I think. --Lasunncty (talk) 10:08, 29 July 2014 (UTC)

In popular culture section needed!~[edit]

We need an "in popular culture" section like, post-haste. Get to it minions! You could start with the recent xkcd comic on the matter, which likens it to Superman (5 inches taller, and 7% stronger! (than regular man)). Then there's that song I just can't recall the name of, it takes about the supermoon something something. I forget. And of course, the novel that discusses it being easier to fly to the moon when it's closer. And resolves around the failure of politics here on Earth.

Anyway, there's loads of stuff out there, and you can find it, and you can add it. I've got work to do, so I'm not going to. 124.154.121.125 (talk) 01:33, 16 July 2014 (UTC)

There is no such thing as 'supermoon'[edit]

just because some astrologer made up a phrase that doesnt mean there is.

http://www.csillagaszat.hu/hirek/asztroblog/szuperhold-marpedig-nincs/

There are superearths in other stellar systems so supermoons could only be their moons. — Preceding unsigned comment added by 188.143.60.240 (talk) 11:01, 10 August 2014 (UTC)