Don't miss the incredible rare 'super blue blood moon' eclipse

23 January, 2018, 02:12 | Author: Yolanda Murray
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January 31 lunar eclipse is special because there are three separate lunar events occurring on the same day: A Supermoon, an eclipse, and a Blue Moon. Even without the supermoon, it's the first blue moon total lunar eclipse in the United States since March 1866, less than a year after the Civil War ended, according to Earthsky.

"The eclipse begins at 5:51 AM ET, as the Moon is about to set in the western sky, and the sky is getting lighter in the east", said Gordon Johnston, program executive and lunar blogger at NASA Headquarters in Washington.

The month's second full moon on January 31 is known as a blue moon.

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Although the super blue blood moon will be visible to the naked eye, if you're after some expert commentary to go along with your viewing, join the Dubai Astronomy Group at Al Thuraya Astronomy Center in Mushrif Park. On Jan. 31, when this super blue moon passes through the Earth's shadow in the eclipse, it will actually appear reddish in color; hence, the term "blood moon".

Residents living in the Central Time Zone will have the best viewing since the action begins when the Moon is higher in the western sky on January 31, according to NASA officials.

In the United States, the best view of the eclipse will be along the West Coast.

Three lunar phenomena to occur simultaneously on January 31
The Moon on January 30 will appear slightly larger in size, however it will not be completely full so it's not a true supermoon . It marks the last episode of the supermoon trilogy where the very first occurred in the month of December previous year .

For viewers on the East coast, your best opportunity is to head outside about 6:45 a.m. and make sure to get to a high place to watch the start of the eclipse. The eclipse will begin while most people are still in bed at 3:48 a.m.

"The Super Moon is a full moon at the moon's closest orbital approach, about 30,000 km closer than it normally is", he said. Once in a (super) blue (blood) moon, some might say.

The best time to view the event in the St. Louis area is between 6:00-6:30 a.m.in the western sky.

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Eastern Canada will have a more hard time to view since the sun rises at that time.

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