Yes, many will call the June 2013 full moon a supermoon. The upcoming full moon
on June 23, 2013, will not only be the closest and largest full moon of the
year. It’ll also present the moon’s closest encounter with Earth for all of
2013. This year’s closest and largest full moon will occur on June 23 at
precisely 11:32 Universal Time. At United States’ time zones, that means the
moon will turn full on June 23 at 7:32 a.m. EDT, 6:32 a.m. CDT, 5:32 a.m. MDT
and 4:32 a.m. PDT. We astronomers call this sort of close full moon a perigee
full moon. The word perigee describes the moon’s closest point to Earth for a
given month. Two years ago, when the closest and largest full moon fell on March
19, 2011, many used a term we’d never heard before: supermoon. Last year, we
heard this term again to describe the year’s closest full moon on May 6, 2012.
This year, we also hear the term supermoon referring to the year’s closest full
moon on June 23, 2013. What does supermoon mean exactly? And how special is the
June 23, 2013 supermoon?