Watch out for the ‘wolf’s moon’ which will be in the night sky this January

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Watch out for the ‘wolf’s moon’ this January.
image: pixabay

This month sees the first full moon of 2022, known as the ‘wolf’s moon’

Next Tuesday 18, stargazers, and lovers of all things heavenly, will be able to observe the first full moon of 2022, commonly known as the ‘wolf’s moon’. Our terrestrial satellite will enter the full moon phase at 0:48am. At this time, it will be in the constellation of Cancer, about 400,000km away.

The moon will then be very close to its apogee, which is its maximum distance from the Earth. As a result, it will look somewhat smaller, and less bright than usual, although the difference will not be appreciable to the naked eye.

This name, ‘wolf moon’ name comes from the Amerindian tribes, and refers to the fact that, at this time of year, the natives heard these animals howling with greater intensity and frequency outside their villages.

Before reaching its maximum splendour on Tuesday 18, the terrestrial satellite entered its new moon phase on January 2. From now on, each day will start and run approximately 40 minutes later than on previous days.

It should be remembered that nights with a full moon are probably the worst for observing deep space objects. This is because the light reflected by the satellite is enough to prevent the observation of dimmer objects, such as nebulae, and galaxies.

Supermoons in 2022

As for the supermoons that 2022 will bring, there will be three successive ones: in June, July, and August. This phenomenon occurs when the satellite is near its perigee, which is the shortest distance from Earth.

This supermoon term is not an official definition, but has become popular in recent years. On those occasions, the satellite is 10 per cent larger and brighter than usual, although the difference is not appreciable unless we are regular observers of the full moon, as reported by 20minutos.es.

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