Saturday, 20 January, 2018

New Year's Day Brings Biggest Full Moon Of 2018

Supermoons, meteor shower to light up the sky this January How to Watch the First Blue Moon in 150 Years
Grady Vargas | 05 January, 2018, 14:43

The total phase of the eclipse - for those who can see it - will be 77 minutes.

The occurrence of Blue moon total eclipse is an uncommon event as it is taking place after a long span of 150 years.

The lunar eclipse, wherein the Earth's shadow will cover the moon, will be seen from 6:49 p.m. on January 31 until 12:09 a.m. on February 1.

To the east, Alaska, Hawaii and northwestern Canada will see the eclipse from start to finish. It will be mainly visible from South America, Africa, Central Asia and India.

The moon rose just shy of full on New Year's Eve, promising a supermoon early in 2018.

A total lunar eclipse will occur in the early morning hours of January 31, beginning at 3:51 a.m.

A supermoon rises behind a statue of George Washington on Monday Jan. 1 2018 in Trenton New Jersey. AP
A supermoon rises behind a statue of George Washington on Monday Jan. 1 2018 in Trenton New Jersey. AP

New Year's Day brought us a spectacular wolf full moon, named for the howls of hungry wolves in winter. Firstly, the moon will be full for the second time in this month. Supermoons occur when we get a full moon near or at the point when the moon's orbit is closest to Earth, also called the perigee of its orbit (the technical term for the event is really perigee-syzygy). In some areas, the moon is expected to appear reddish since during an eclipse, as light travels through the atmosphere, blue light is bounced off the moon's surface and red light is reflected, hence the name "blood".

Timetable for the main stages of the January 31, 2018, blue moon total lunar eclipse, for six time zones. Thirdly, a total lunar eclipse will take place making the event a super rare one which occurs once in 150 years.

"The lunar eclipse on January 31 will be visible during moonset. Folks in the eastern United States, where the eclipse will be partial, will have to get up in the morning to see it", said Noah Petro, a research scientist from NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center on the agency's website.

Since the moon's orbit is elliptical, one side (apogee) is about 30,000 miles farther from Earth than the other (perigee).

The combination of a supermoon and total lunar eclipse creating a blood moon last occurred in 1982 and will not happen again until 2033. With that being said, the event is still very rare.

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