Sick of asteroids stealing headlines, moon steps up tonight

La Luna is tired of being upstaged by the space rocks that have recently been whizzing their way past Earth, "closer than the moon." So tonight she's putting on a show. Consider this CNET's friendly reminder to look up.

"Asteroids? Pffft," says La Luna. JLMphoto/Flickr

It seems that these days, every time you sneeze, yawn, or scratch your nose, another giant asteroid is screaming past the Earth, closer than the moon.

We saw it happen last November, when a space stone the size of an aircraft carrier all but sideswiped us. Then in March it happened again, when a relatively modest cosmic rock -- this one the size of a mere passenger jet -- shot on by.

Well, it looks like the moon is sick of getting upstaged by these pebbly insurgents. As you may have heard , our iconic cratered neighbor has decided to put on a show for us tonight.

It's a super perigee moon, meaning La Luna will be full just as she's at the point in her orbit that's closest to Earth. Thus, if we remember to look up (and please consider this CNET's friendly reminder to do so), we'll see a full moon that's 14 percent bigger and 30 percent brighter than the other full moons of 2012, according to NASA.

And that will no doubt be more impressive than any piddly little asteroids that happen to be in the vicinity (even if they did happen to be visible).

So there, asteroids.

You'll want to catch the moon as it's rising -- it'll look even bigger when it's near the horizon. For more details, and a photo gallery of last year's super perigee performance, go here .

And do please remember to look up this evening.

 

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