Australia is getting a Blood Moon this weekend

Christopher Davidson
July 23, 2018

Less than a year after the 2017 solar eclipse created a path of totality across the United States, the longest total lunar eclipse of the 21st century will be visible across much of the world on Friday, July 27. We will not be able to see the eclipse in Jacksonville, or in any of North America.

Those on the east coast will not see the Moon leave the shadow but people living further west should see almost all of the lunar eclipse.

The Moon will appear to darken and gradually turn red as it moves into Earth's shadow in the early hours of Saturday. Stargazers across large swaths of the globe had the chance to witness a rare "super blue blood Moon" on January 31, 2018, when Earth's shadow bathed our satellite in a coppery hue.

ASSA will be hosting public eclipse-viewing events in Cape Town at the V&A Waterfront and in Johannesburg at Observatory. A lunar eclipse can occur only when the moon is full. The total duration of the various stages of eclipse will be 6 hours, 14 minutes in the Kingdom.

Tune in starting at 2:24p.m. (Jacksonville time) to see the partial eclipse.

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The most-awaited phase of the eclipse, the total lunar eclipse, is estimated to set in from 1 am IST on July 28. Since the moon will be at its most distant and smallest, it will take more time to cross the Earth's shadow. The total time of the entire eclipse will be nearly four hours.

An added treat next week: July's total lunar eclipse occurs on the same day the planet Mars reaches its opposition, when it will shine at its best in the night sky, according to Space.com.

As the Moon continues on its orbit, and pulls away from the Umbra, stargazers will notice another partial lunar eclipse. It is safe to look at a lunar eclipse.

Protective eyewear was recommended during the recent solar eclipse to protect people's eyes from the sun's bright light.

Why does NASA study eclipses? NASA can learn what the moon's surface is made of from this data. Scientists use this data to know which areas of the moon are rough with boulders and which are flat.

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