Super Worm Moon in UAE: Residents enjoy lunar spectacle

The Moon appeared roughly 10 per cent bigger than normal

Stargazers in the UAE witnessed the second super moon of the year late on Monday.

The lunar spectacle - dubbed the 'Super Worm Moon' - started rising from the east at about 5.11pm.

It became its biggest and brightest at about 6.30pm, said Hasan Al Hariri from Dubai Astronomy Group.

Clearly visible across the Emirates, the astronomical phenomena meant the Moon appeared about “eight to 10 per cent larger than normal”, he said.

“It will be a very gradual process and the increase in size is only small, but it will be beautiful nonetheless,” Mr Al Hariri said.

“We always say the best position to view the Moon is when it is in the centre of the sky, but people will likely fail to see a big size difference, so it is best to catch a glimpse of it as it is still rising.”

Mr Al Hariri said the event was just one of “four super moon sightings to take place in 2020”.

The first occurred last month and the remaining two will take place in April and May. However, he said the 'Super Worm Moon' would present some of the best viewing from the UAE.

Mr Al Hariri recommended viewing the Moon from areas with little to no light pollution.

“The weather should be clear enough for people to see throughout the evening, but scattered cloud could impact visibility in some areas,” he said early on Monday.

“We will be live streaming the event on the Dubai Astronomy Group’s YouTube page as we have postponed all gatherings in line with government directives due to the Covid-19 outbreak.”

According to Nasa, the 'Super Worm Moon' is named due to its occurrence at a time of the year when earthworm casts appear as the ground thaws in cold countries.

It is the latest celestial event to capture the imagination of residents.

DUBAI, UNITED ARAB EMIRATES. 09 MARCH 2020. 
Supermoon seen from Palm Jumeirah.
(Photo: Reem Mohammed/The National)

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On December 26 last year, UAE residents turned out in their droves to see the rare solar eclipse, which was last visible in the country in 1847.

As the moon passed across the centre of the sun, it left an impressive ring of light which delighted stargazers across the country, including Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohammad, the Crown Prince of Dubai, who posted the live event on his social media.

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