Super blue blood moon: Stargazers gear up for rare celestial event
For people in the Middle East, Asia, Indonesia, Australia or New Zealand, this lunar eclipse will happen in the evening after sunset on January 31
The day, January 31 is going to be a special day for all astronomy lovers as a rare celestial convergence - a 'super blue blood moon' - will grace the skies.
On Wednesday evening, there will be a full moon, a total lunar eclipse, a blue moon and a supermoon. None of these things is all that unusual. What is rare is that they’re happening all together on one day.
According to NASA, the January 31 full moon is special for three reasons: It’s the third in a series of supermoons, when the Moon is closest to Earth in its orbit - known as perigee - and about 14 percent brighter than usual.
It’s also the second full moon of the month, commonly known as a 'blue moon'. The super blue moon will pass through Earth’s shadow to give viewers in the right location a total lunar eclipse. While the Moon is in the Earth’s shadow it will take on a reddish tint, known as a 'blood moon', ex- plains NASA.
For people in the Middle East, Asia, Indonesia, Australia or New Zealand, this lunar eclipse will happen in the evening after sunset on January 31.
According to Suleiman al Busaidi, curator, PDO Planetarium, on Wednesday in Oman, the sun will set at 5.53pm and the moon will rise two minutes before sunset at 5.51 pm.
“As the greatest eclipse (peak) will be around 5:31pm and total lunar eclipse ends at 6:08pm, we are going to observe the total lunar eclipse for around 15 minutes only,” he said.
“This will also be a blue moon, the second of two full moons in one calendar month,” he added.
The planetarium will be organising a stargazing event for the total lunar eclipse on Wednesday from 4.30pm-7.30pm.
Children aged 10-15 years will be able to participate in the Moon Phases 2018 workshop and also watch the show 'Dawn of the Space Age'. The first workshop will start at 4pm in English and the second in Arabic at 5pm.