The biggest and brightest moon of 2020 is expected to appear in the skies very soon after reaching perigee, which is the closest point from Earth in its elliptic orbit. This results in a “Supermoon” – a full moon that is a bit larger-than-average apparent size of the lunar disk as viewed from Earth.
There is a smaller distance between April's full moon and the Earth which makes it appear approximately 7% larger than the average full moon and about 14% larger than a full moon at apogee, or its farthest distance from Earth, which is also called a minimoon. This moon is also said to be about 30% brighter than a full moon at apogee. It is expected that the Pink Moon will be just around 356,000 km from the Earth during midnight and on the morning of April 8. In most cases, the distance between the moon and the Earth is about 384,000 km.
The Pink Moon isn't really pink. As per the Old Farmer's Almanac, the Pink Moon has been named after a type of spring flower called the wild ground phlox, common in North America. The flower is also popularly known as a moss pink, which is a brightly-coloured flower and often blooms at the time of spring and around the same time as that of April's full moon.
According to Amy Nieskens of The Old Farmer's Almanac, the April's Full Moon is called the Full Pink Moon as it takes the appearance of wild ground phlox or moss pink, which is amongst the first spring flowers. However, the April’s full moon has also been known by a few other names which include the Sprouting Grass Moon, the Egg Moon, the Fish Moon or the Paschal Moon.
Image credits: Unsplash | Altınay Dinç