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'Supermoon' could bring high tides

March 17, 2011 at 4:02 PM   |   Comments

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FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla., March 17 (UPI) -- U.S. scientists say a phenomenon called an "extreme supermoon" could create abnormally high tides as the moon makes its closest approach to Earth in 18 years.

Experts say the moon will appear 10 to 15 percent larger than normal and could create high tides from Friday through Sunday that might bring beach erosion and minor shoreline flooding, the South Florida Sun-Sentinel reported Thursday.

"The tides are definitely going to be higher, not only in Florida, but worldwide," astronomer Arnold Pearlstein said.

When it rises on Saturday at sunset will be the best time to view it and the moon should look "huge and orangey," Pearlstein said.

Some believe the supermoon is a foretelling of global chaos including earthquakes and hurricanes, but Pearlstein doesn't buy that.

Still, he said, "It's going to be interesting to see if there will be more wolves howling at the moon."

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