Lunar Trifecta in Alaska: Super Blue Blood Moon

Celestial trifecta: Super Blue Blood Moon coming Wednesday

On Wednesday, much of the world will get to see not only a blue moon and a supermoon, but also a total lunar eclipse, all rolled into one.

According to EarthSky.org, it's the first blue moon total lunar eclipse in the US since March 1866. For us, the moon will set at 6:44, and the show will be over as the moon sinks below the horizon 80% eclipsed. A lunar eclipse occurs when the Earth sits directly between the Sun and the Moon.

The last time all three of these events happened at the same time was nearly 152 years ago.

The moon will rise at about 5pm on Wednesday 31 January, and will be high in the sky from around 7pm until 8am on Thursday 1 February.

Three relatively rare lunar events will converge early Wednesday, creating an nearly unheard-of space spectacle that will have Southland sky-gazers waking up early to stare upwards, and will have the Griffith Observatory hosting an overnight eclipse party.

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That is, if Seattle's weather obliges. The Indian scenario As we have reported earlier, the state of Kerala is making special arrangements for ensuring that the state's residents have the best views of the lunar event. So, the Moon will be below or above the path Earth is following when revolving around the Sun.

The moon will actually be closest to Earth today - just more than 223,000 miles.

Blue refers to the second full moon in a calendar month. The term, "once in a blue moon", used to mean something that was quite unlikely or even never going to happen, and the phrase only became more popular in the last 50 years or so. And while the Moon is in the Earth's shadow it will take on a reddish tint, known as a "blood moon". The next total lunar eclipse visible across North America will occur January 21, 2019.

For about an hour and 17 minutes, the full, "blue", "super" moon will pass through the shadow of the Earth, which will cast an erie orange-tinted shadow across the cratered surface. But if you still want to take a look early Wednesday morning, get outside sometime between 6 and 7 a.m. and have a look in the western sky.

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    Global map showing areas of the world that will experience (weather permitting) the January 31, 2018 " super blue blood moon ". And unlike a solar eclipse, a lunar eclipse is perfectly safe to watch in the night with the naked eye.
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