A ‘Once in a Blue Moon’ Moment in the Skies over Pittsburgh

The rare super blue moon peaks at 9:36 p.m. on Aug. 30.


You’ve heard the phrase: “Once in a blue moon.”

That’s not an exaggeration, especially when it’s also a supermoon.

A blue moon occurs when it’s the second full moon in a month; the first one occurred on Aug. 1. And supermoons appear when a full moon occurs at the same time that the moon’s orbit is closest to our planet.

This week’s full moons on Aug. 30 and Aug. 31 will be the biggest and brightest of the year. The first one on Wednesday will rise just after sunset at 7:10 p.m. and reach its peak at 9:36 p.m. It will be in the constellation Aquarius.

How unusual is it that you get a super blue moon? Only 3% of all full moons meet this classification, according to NASA Science.

The time between super blue moons is irregular ― it can be as long as 20 years, but the average is every 10 years.

So make sure you go out and admire the full moons this week — you won’t see these again until 2037, when there will be a pair: one in January and the next in March.

Categories: The 412