Science

NASA promises Saturday’s Lunar eclipse will be super-sized and colorful

Lunar Eclipse via Wikipedia
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This Saturday, not only will we see the last total Lunar eclipse until 2014 but, depending on your location, the Moon will appear to be super-sized.

Lunar Eclipse via Wikipedia

Readers in the American west will have some of the best views of the eclipse, according to NASA, but you’ll have to get up early to see it.  The space agency says that the eclipse will begin at 4:45 AM PST and climax at 6:05 AM PST – the Moon will be just over the western horizon.  In the UK and Ireland the eclipse will begin at 12:45 PM GMT; the Moon will remain eclipsed from 2:05PM GMT to 2:57 PM GMT.

Around the world; China, Japan, Australia, Eastern Russia, and Western states in the USA will see the full lunar eclipse while Europe, Africa, and the Eastern US will see a partial eclipse.  Unfortunately South America and Central/Western Africa won’t see anything this time.

Because the Moon will be sitting low on the horizon NASA says it will appear magnified, providing star-gazers with a greater view of the event.  Although NASA knows that this is going to happen they say they are not entirely sure why.

NASA promises that this will be an amazing eclipse not just for its size but also for its colour.  Unlike a Solar eclipse when the Sun is hidden from view the Moon is expected to turn red and turquoise when it enters the Earth’s shadow on Saturday.

NASA explains that this is because of the interplay between the Sun’s light and Earth’s atmosphere.  The actual color the Moon will turn depends on the particles in the atmosphere at the time of the eclipse.  So, because of low levels of volcanic activity lately the Moon should be dark red and faintly turquoise this time.

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Piers Dillon Scott
Piers Dillon-Scott is co-editor of The Sociable and writes about stuff he finds. He likes technology, media, and using the Oxford comma (because it just makes sense).