Move Over 2017, The Wolf Moon Is Here

First Blue Moon total eclipse in 150 years coming this month

A Blue Moon occurs when there are two full moons in one month.

The month's second supermoon will occur on 31 January when there will be a total lunar eclipse or blood moon.

According to EarthSky.org, tonight's supermoon will also be the closest perigee of the year.

But for those in North America, the eclipse will be visible before sunrise on January 31, according to EarthSky. This moon will also cause particularly high or king tides. For Eastern time (EST) in the USA, residents in that region will see the eclipse begin at 6:48 AM and the moon will dip out of view shortly thereafter.

The moon is at its closest point to Earth - known as the perigee - around 221,600 miles away.

This evening, pictures show the blood-red moon rising over Tynemouth, Tyne and Wear.

The moon is scheduled to become full at precisely 8:24 p.m.

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Lunar eclipses are safe to watch and observers need not use any kind of protective filters for the eyes, PAGASA said, however, a binocular or telescope will help magnify the view and will make the red coloration of the moon brighter.

If the criteria for a supermoon is chiefly dependent on the moon's arrival at its closest point in its orbit relative to Earth, then the "super" branding is a bit of a misnomer. "It didn't look at all brighter than normal".

The full moon on January 2 was also a super moon because it was within 361,000 kms.

The first and last supermoon of 2017 didn't happen until December, but in 2018 the wait won't last past New Year's Day.

The popular astrophysicist Neil deGrasse Tyson probably said it best: "In the overall scheme of things, is this relatively small increase in the moon's apparent size really so meaningful?"

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