French skies mostly clear for Friday's lunar eclipse

Watch The Longest Lunar Eclipse Of The Century In Singapore On July 28

While it won't be visible in Canadian skies, there are ways you can see the spectacle for yourself. In Auckland the eclipse is still partial (i.e. totality is yet to begin) as the Moon disappears below the horizon.

The moon appears red (rather than in complete darkness) due to blue light from the earth's atmosphere refracting sunlight onto the surface of the moon. "About an hour later, the partial phase will begin at 2.24am when the moon begins to be covered by the dark Earth's shadow, the Umbra", he said.

Total lunar eclipse is very rare and only 30 per cent of all lunar eclipses are total.

During a lunar eclipse, we can see the Earth's shadow on the moon.

It will last for 103 minutes, or 1 hour and 43 minutes, making it the longest eclipse of the 21st century.

On Friday, skywatchers around the world will be rewarded with the longest total lunar eclipse of the century - except those in North America. It can pass through the outer, fainter shadow, called the penumbra. The moon travels to a similar position every month at full moon, but the tilt of the lunar orbit means that it normally passes above or below the terrestrial shadow and no eclipse takes place. But there's nothing scary about it. "The rim of the Earth would be glowing because light is being scattered by the Earth's atmosphere".

A red planet glowing next to a red moon - it should be a lovely show. "This red tint comes from a filtering effect of the Earth's atmosphere.so the intensity of the coloring will depend on the state of the atmosphere".

It was revealed, however, that not all regions will be able to fully witness the event.

Watch The Longest Lunar Eclipse Of The Century In Singapore On July 28

You can watch it online with The Virtual Telescope Project or Slooh.

The event is co-organised by the Survey Department of the Ministry of Development, Universiti Islam Sultan Sharif Ali and the Astronomical Society of Brunei Darussalam.

But there are a couple of extra-special happenings that night.

"Since the moon is bright anyway, you'll be able to see it regardless of light pollution, but to see the planets Venus, Jupiter, Saturn, and Mars nearly in line with the moon, you'll want a nice dark spot where light from the city or streets does not pollute the sky too much", Knowles said.

And finally - the Moon is near apogee (the most distant point in its orbit) around the July full moon, Edberg said.

"It just happens to be we're in the right place at the right time to see the whole event", he said.

Amy Simon, a Nasa scientist who will make observations of storms on Mars on Friday, said: "It's giving people a chance to go out and look up and remind themselves that there are other things out there that people often forget about as they run from house to auto".




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