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Mysteries of the SupermoonIt's a bird! It's a plane! No... It's the supermoon!
About once a year, when the moon is at its most full and closest position relative to the Earth, it becomes the supermoon. Supermoons have been blamed for everything from madness to flooding, but is it fair to find fault with Earth's closest cosmic neighbor?
Here are seven strange facts you may not have known about the supermoon.
Editor's note: In Fall 2016, there are THREE consecutive "supermoon" full moons> in October, November and December. The Nov. 14 supermoon is the closest and brightest since 1948! Such an event won't occur again until 2034. Here's our handy guide: Supermoon November 2016: When, Where & How to See It.
FIRST STOP: Earth Destroyer? Not at All
(This slideshow was a updated on Nov. 13, 2016)
A Supermoon Won't Destroy EarthSlide 2 of 15
A Supermoon Won't Destroy Earth
Despite the claims of some people around the world, the supermoon will not destroy the Earth.
The supermoon happens when the moon is at perigee — the point in its orbit that brings it closest to Earth — and in its fullest phase. [Amazing Supermoon Photos of 2012]
The supermoon a normal occurrence since the moon is on an elliptical orbit, and will not make Earth's orbit go out of whack, NASA even says so.
NEXT: Don't Fear Insanity…Slide 3 of 15
It Won't Make You CrazySlide 4 of 15
It Won't Make You CrazySlide 5 of 15
Not All Supermoons Are The SameSlide 6 of 15
Not All Supermoons Are The Same
The perigee between the Earth and the moon can vary by as much as the diameter of the Earth during any given month. Although that might seem like a large number, on average, the moon is about 30 Earth diameters away from the planet. [Supermoon Science Explained (Infographic)]
The sun's gravity is actually responsible for pulling the Earth and moon into a closer alignment, causing the orbital variation.
NEXT: Bigger in The Winter…Slide 7 of 15
Winter Supermoons Are SupersizedSlide 8 of 15