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The moon is a pink balloon! JANE FRYER explains what it can do for all of us

Dust off your binoculars, get a comfortable seat next to an east-facing window, set your alarm and prepare in the front row to witness a real natural wonder.

Because on Wednesday morning at exactly 3.35 am the expansive Pink Super Moon will be high in the sky and illuminate our sky in all its beautiful moon glory.

Every April, sandwiched between the Worm Moon in March and the Flower Moon in May, the Pink Moon hangs like a big glowing globe in the sky, almost impossibly big, bright and full.

But for all those thousands of stars, humanity has always maintained a special, fiery connection to the moon. And if the moon, known as our 'eighth continent', seems to be inextricably linked to everything here on Earth, it is because it is

But for all those thousands of stars, humanity has always maintained a special, fiery connection to the moon. And if the moon – known as our ‘eighth continent’ – seems to be inextricably linked to everything here on Earth, it’s because it

But this year, meteorologists expect it to be bigger and brighter than ever – thanks in part to its proximity to Earth, but mainly because of the clear sky predicted this week and the reduced air pollution from the shutdown of the corona virus.

Because in the early hours of tomorrow morning, the moon, whose orbit is not around Earth, will be as close to our planet (the ‘perigee’) as possible – just 225,623 miles away, compared to the average lunar-earth distance of 252,088 miles. As a result, it will appear 14 percent larger and a third brighter than usual.

All this means that those with a telescope, binoculars or even particularly beady eyes will be able to distinguish some of its vast plains, jagged mountains, ancient volcanoes and the relentless scars of endless meteorite bombing.

The sky is clear not only from pollution, but also from airplanes and helicopters flying overhead. The air quality over our cities is the best it has been in decades

The sky is clear not only from pollution, but also from airplanes and helicopters flying overhead. The air quality over our cities is the best it has been in decades

The sky is clear – not only from pollution, but also from planes and helicopters flying overhead. The air quality over our cities is the best it has been in decades

But not that all of the above is really pink.

Because the name, which comes from Native Americans, does not come from the color of the moon, but from the spring blossom of ‘moss pink’ or phlox flowers – one of the early flowers to coincide with the April super moon in the US.

(It also has plenty of other names – the Egg Moon, Full Sprouting Grass Moon, Growing Moon, and Full Fish Moon – all of which reflect different seasonal markings from around the world.)

When it comes up tomorrow, the “Pink” Moon will initially appear more orange than anything.

When a full moon is seen low in the sky and close to the horizon, it is viewed through a greater thickness of the Earth’s atmosphere. As a result, the oxygen- and nitrogen-rich mixture filters or breaks the bluer wavelengths of white moonlight – that’s just light reflected from the sun – and leaves more of the red component of the moonlight in the eye.

Of course, right now in the middle of the coronavirus lock, now is the perfect time to look up. The sky is clear – not only from pollution, but also from planes and helicopters flying overhead. The air quality over our cities is the best it has been in decades.

Dust off your binoculars, get a comfortable seat next to an east-facing window, set your alarm and prepare in the front row to witness a real natural wonder. A pink full moon is depicted above in Rome in 2013

Dust off your binoculars, get a comfortable seat next to an east-facing window, set your alarm and prepare in the front row to witness a real natural wonder. A pink full moon is depicted above in Rome in 2013

Dust off your binoculars, get a comfortable seat next to an east-facing window, set your alarm and prepare in the front row to witness a real natural wonder. A pink full moon is depicted above in Rome in 2013

In fact, we actually have time to pause, look up, notice the canvas of miracles above us.

In addition to the majestic luminous moon, we can now witness all that the cosmos has to offer.

Not just a strange twinkling star (it’s easy to distinguish them from planets because the latter, much closer, barely twinkle), but entire constellations – to the north; Ursa Minor and Major, the squad, Cassiopeia, Perseus, Auriga. And in the south, Taurus, Cancer, Little Canis and Major. The list goes on.

In fact, on a clear night in a good location, up to 3,000 stars can be seen in the sky. And all you need to see the most is a window, a strong neck to look up to, or a warm coat and a blanket to lie on when you’re out in your yard.

But for all those thousands of stars, humanity has always maintained a special, fiery connection to the moon.

And if the moon – known as our “eighth continent” – seems to be inextricably linked to everything here on Earth, it is because it is so.

More than four billion years ago, it was actually part of our planet. That is, until a very young Earth, which was then smaller than it is today, was hit by another planet the size of Mars.

The impact – one of the largest explosions ever in the solar system and the most dramatic even in Earth’s history – resulted in the two planets solidifying into a seething molten mass that took ages to cool. At some point during the process, a huge blob of material was thrown into space and became the moon.

Time to take on the Super Moon challenge. . .

By Oscar Cainer, astrologer for Daily Mail

The Supermoon defines the peak of a cycle that started at the New Moon. It suggests the fulfillment of a promise, the illumination of hidden information and the ability to turn concepts into tangible reality.

It suggests the fulfillment of a promise, the relief of hidden information, and the ability to turn concepts into tangible reality, writes Daily Mail Astrologer Oscar Cainer

It suggests the fulfillment of a promise, the relief of hidden information, and the ability to turn concepts into tangible reality, writes Daily Mail Astrologer Oscar Cainer

It suggests the fulfillment of a promise, the relief of hidden information, and the ability to turn concepts into tangible reality, writes Daily Mail Astrologer Oscar Cainer

It sounds great, doesn’t it? But when things come to a head, we realize that our solutions aren’t as perfect as we hoped. This is an ideal time to negotiate and rework ideas.

When the Super Moon arrives, it connects to Jupiter and Pluto. These two heavenly powerhouses came together recently and have been causing trouble for a while.

The last time they met like this was when we entered 2008, the year of the financial crash.

The good news is that this time, the Libran SuperMoon focuses its energy on fighting for good instead of fighting for power.

It is time to celebrate honesty and decency by showing kindness despite our difficult circumstances.

This Super Moon calls on us to show who we are and what we really stand for. It offers a challenge that I think (and hope) we are ready for.

Tomorrow, it will take the form of a Pink Super Moon, as it takes off from light pale orange to bright, silvery white as it ascends – too bright to look long when it’s high in the sky, but utterly beautiful.

As Emily Drabek-Maunder, an astronomer at the British Royal Observatory Greenwich, puts it: ‘It will be spectacular. The Super Moon is a great opportunity for everyone to appreciate the beauty of the natural world. ‘

It will certainly be beautiful and great and for those with binoculars and telescopes there will be a lot to see. For starters, Copernicus, a 60-mile-wide crater about 800 million years old.

Then there is the selection of the different seas of the moon; the Seas of Vapors, Serenity, Tranquility, Crises and Fertility (not real seas, but dark plains formed by volcanic eruptions).

And let’s not forget the Aristarchus meteor scar to the left of Copernicus and the huge Tycho crater at the very bottom. All from your bedroom window.

But if your alarm doesn’t go off somehow or if you just can’t get out of bed, don’t panic.

The Flower Super Moon will be in all its glory next month to kickstart May, albeit not as bright and beautiful and breathtakingly close as this one.

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