Published: Thu, July 26, 2018
Sci-tech | By Patricia Wade

The longest lunar eclipse of the century is coming Friday

The longest lunar eclipse of the century is coming Friday

A total eclipse of the moon will be visible with the naked eye throughout SA on Friday night. Totality - the time during which the sun's light is completely blocked - will last for one hour and 43 minutes. The ASSA says that this will be the "longest eclipse of the century". On July 27, our moon will transform into a red orb for 1 hour, 42 minutes, and 57 seconds!

Due to this reddish colour, a totally eclipsed moon is sometimes called a blood moon.

This week's blood moon will also happen on the same night that the Earth is passing between sun and Mars, which places Mars at opposition in the sky.

At the same time, Mars will hang just below the moon and shine brighter than it ever has in 15 years.

You've probably heard the term Blood Moon bandied around the past few weeks.

Lunar eclipses typically occur only during a full moon, however on this instance the moon will be in ideal alignment with the sun and earth, also known as the blood moon. This is your one-stop shop for how, why, where and when to watch Blood Moon.

A super blue blood moon rises behind the 2,500-year-old Parthenon temple on the Acropolis of Athens, Greece, on January 31, 2018.

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Hagee related the history of the phenomenon and potential future occurrences in his book "Four Blood Moons: Something is About to Change", which he also turned into a motion picture in honor of the 2015 event.

Sadly, North Americans will miss out entirely.

What is a Blood Moon?

Partial eclipses will precede and succeed the total eclipse, meaning that from start to finish, the moon will spend almost four hours travelling behind Earth. So, start clearing your schedule for Friday because this total lunar eclipse is happening with or without you.

However, not all of Australia will be able to see the entire eclipse. Even better news, Australians are expected to be among those with the best view of the slow-moving astronomy event.

"The Moon is not always in ideal alignment with the Sun and the Earth, so that is why we do not get a lunar eclipse every lunar cycle". However, Indians might not be lucky because of the ongoing monsoon season in the country which might cause the moon to be blocked from view.

"As the Dundee Law is the highest point in the city, you are bound to get great views of the total lunar eclipse". The LRO was launched in June 2009 to provide detailed maps to identify "safe and interesting" landing sites on the moon for future human and robotic exploration.

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