Wednesday night, a harvest moon is expected and the news has created a buzz Wednesday morning; early Wednesday morning, on the East Coast, the harvest moon peaked at 7:13 a.m., but for the rest of the U.S. the harvest moon will peak tonight.
September is the month for the harvest moon and it is the full moon that occurs closest to the autumn equinox (first day of autumn) which will occur on September 22. Most of the country is expecting clear skies Wednesday for the harvest moon of 2013.
Weather.com reported that the September full moon is called the harvest moon because before electric lights workers would use the harvest moon to see while they were harvesting their crops.
NASA’s Dr. Tony Phillips said: "In the days before electric lights, farmers depended on bright moonlight to extend the workday beyond sunset. It was the only way they could gather their ripening crops in time for market. The full moon closest to the autumnal equinox became the Harvest Moon, and it was always a welcome sight."
A harvest moon will rise about 30 minutes later then last night’s full moon. Sometimes the harvest moon will be what is known as a supermoon; this is when the moon appears larger than normal. This last occurred in June and is not expected for this harvest moon; the next supermoon that is also a harvest moon is expected in 2029. It takes 29.5 days for the full moon to cycle each month.
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Sources: Space.com and Weather.com