Pink supermoon 2021: Where can I see it in the UK?

26 April 2021, 10:32

Last year's Pink Supermoon above Edinburgh
Last year's Pink Supermoon above Edinburgh. Picture: PA

By Patrick Grafton-Green

Stargazers will be able to see a pink supermoon in skies in the UK and across the world this week.

During the rare celestial event, the Earth's natural satellite will still appear around 14% bigger and 30% brighter.

Here’s what you need to know:

When is the pink supermoon 2021?

It is expected to take place just before sunset on Tuesday, April 27 as the moon rises in the east and will be visible until it sets in the west the next morning.

Anna Ross, an astronomer at the Royal Observatory in Greenwich, said: "The average distance of the moon from the Earth is 384,400km, but the moon will reach its closest point this lunar month on April 27 at 16:24, when it will be 357,379 km away.

"The exact moment of the full moon closest to this point - so the supermoon - is also on April 27, but at 04:31.

"This means that the best times to view this supermoon will be anytime during the night of April 27 - when the moon will rise in the east just before sunset and set in the west around sunrise."

What causes a supermoon?

A supermoon occurs when the full moon is near its closest point to the Earth in its orbit.

Ms Ross said: "A supermoon is the result of a full moon occurring when the moon is near its closest point to the Earth in its orbit.

"This can happen because the moon orbits the Earth on an elliptical path, rather than a circular one.

"As this means that the moon is a little closer to us, it appears slightly bigger in the sky."

Why is it called a pink moon?

The full moon in April is known as the "pink moon" as it is named after pink flowers, known as phlox, which bloom in the springtime.

There will not be any noticeable difference in colour, as the name might suggest.

When will the next supermoon be?

The next supermoon will be visible in May 2021.