Follow Us On:

Watch for ‘Super Blue Blood Moon’ Wednesday morning

Posted on Tuesday, January 30, 2018 at 3:11 pm

All eyes to the sky early tomorrow morning to see a unique “super blue blood moon” that will be visible like a giant pink orb in the early dawn.

This lunar eclipse happens just as the moon slips behind Earth’s shadow. It is when the Earth moves in between the sun and the moon. For half the planet, the moon will appear a rusty color for just over an hour. While lunar eclipses are not that unusual, the timing of the blood moon with it makes it extraordinary.

It is also called a blue moon because it is the second full moon to occur in a month and a super moon because it will be closer to the Earth and appear bigger than usual.
Folks on the East Coast will begin entering the penumbra at 5:51 a.m. local time (4:51 Central time), according to Gordon Johnston, a program executive at NASA. Then it will plunge into the umbra at 5:48 a.m. This happens around the time of the rising sun, so it may be difficult to see it before the sun drowns it out. For us, the moon enters the penumbra at 4:51 a.m. and starts to turn reddish around 6:15 a.m.

Between 6:15 a.m. and 6:30 a.m. local time will be the best chance for anyone living in this area to see the spectacle before the sun rises, according to Mr. Johnston.

To see it best, look in the west-northwest direction and there is no need for eclipse glasses you probably have in the junk drawer.

“The farther west you are, the higher in the west-northwest the moon will appear, the darker the sky will be,” said Mr. Johnston, “and the longer you will be able to view the eclipse before sunrise and moonset.”
If you miss it, you can watch it on television beginning at 6:30 a.m. Central time. NASA will show the event. You can also catch a broadcast by the Slooh Community Observatory, a telescope service, starting at 6:45 a.m.

The next total lunar eclipse will be on July 27 but it won’t be visible from the United States. Folks of Africa, the Middle East and India will get eyefuls. The United States will have to wait another year to see one, and that will be on Jan. 21, 2019, though it will not be a blue moon, only a super blood moon.