The full moon Friday night
will be the biggest one of the year
as Earth's natural satellite reaches its closest point to our planet.
Earth, the moon and the sun
are all bound together by gravity,
which keeps us going around the sun and keeps the moon going around
us as it goes through phases.
The moon makes a trip around Earth every 29.5 days.
But the orbit is not a perfect circle.
The moon's average distance from us
is about 238,855 miles (384,400 km). Friday night it will be
just 221,560 miles (356,567 km) away. It will be 14 percent
bigger in our sky and 30 percent brighter than some other
full moons during the year, according to NASA.
Tides will be higher Friday night, too.
Earth's oceans are pulled by the gravity
of the moon and the sun. So when the moon
is closer, tides are pulled higher. Scientists call these perigean tides,
because the moon's closest point to Earth is called perigee.
The farthest point on the lunar orbit is called apogee.
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