Ciaran McGrath – June 21, 2018
NEXT month’s “blood moon” eclipse will be the biggest the world has witnessed so far this century, with large swathes of Europe in line for a spectacular visual display on the night of July 27.
And if that isn’t enough to whet the appetites of amateur stargazers, Mars will the closest to Earth it has been since 2003.
During a total lunar eclipse, the sunlight which reaches the Moon is refracted by Earth’s atmosphere, which filters out the Sun’s blue light – making the moon look red.
Next month’s eclipse will be especially long because the Moon will pass almost directly through the centre of the Earth’s shadow or umbra.
The Earth will be at its furthest point from the Sun on the day in question, allowing it to cast a bigger shadow.
And the Moon will be at its most distant point in its monthly orbit around the Earth.
Writing on the earthsky.org website, Bruce McClure said next month’s blood moon would last an hour and 43 minutes.He said: “This lunar eclipse is primarily visible from the world’s Eastern Hemisphere – Europe, Africa, Asia, Australia and New Zealand.
Aimee Herd – December 28, 2017
If you happened to miss the big, beautiful supermoon that brightened the night sky earlier in December, you will have another couple opportunities starting right off the bat in 2018. (Photo: Dec. 2017 Supermoon above Christmas lights/credit: Aimee Herd)
January holds two supermoons, one during its first night, according to EarthSky.org. The other falls at the end of the month, on the very last day.
The supermoon of January 31st is the 3rd in a row, and also happens to be a ‘blue moon,’ since it’s the second full moon in one month.
But that’s not all!
On January 31st, that super-blue moon will also pass through the Earth’s shadow, causing a total lunar eclipse.
According to EarthSky.org, “if you live in North America or the Hawaiian Islands, remember that this lunar eclipse will be visible in your sky during the morning hours before sunrise on January 31. On the other hand, if you live in the Middle East, Asia, Indonesia, Australia or New Zealand, this lunar eclipse will happen in the evening hours after sunset on January 31.”
Strange Sounds – Dec 3, 2017
Today, a series of three supermoons in a row – supermoon trifecta – is starting, with fullmoons on December 3, 2017, January 1, 2018, and January 31, 2018. The supermoon on January 1 will be the largest of the year. The most special of the three will light up the sky on January 31 as it features a total lunar eclipse. This second Full Moon of the year… and of the month of January – therefore a Blue Moon – will gradually get darker, and take on a rusty or blood red color during the eclipse.
Blue Moons happen every two and a half years. With the total eclipse, the January 31, 2017 Full Moon could look like this!