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Skygazers rejoice, this Friday, July 27, the world will witness a new lunar eclipse. On this occasion, it will be the longest eclipse of the 21st century, with a total duration of 102 minutes.
According to NASA, the best place to view the phenomenon will be the Indian Ocean, but the eclipse will also be visible in almost all of Europe, Africa, the Middle East, part of Central Asia and in South America.
It is noteworthy to mention that in this second lunar eclipse of 2018, the Earth’s satellite will not darken completely, but will be covered with a reddish veil.
This is called a “Blood Moon,” and occurs when the Moon passes through the cone of the shadow produced by the Earth and, simultaneously, the Earth’s atmosphere filters the blue components of sunlight.
There are a few things worth mentioning when speaking about Blood moons and eclipses.
The lunar eclipse occurs then our Sun, our planet and the moon are positioned in a straight line. The sun lights up one side of our planet, and Earth casts a shadow into space.
As the moon passes into the shadow it becomes darker and darker, until it ends up turning red due to the sunlight that passes through our planet’s atmosphere.
It is noteworthy to mention that lunar eclipses occur on a full moon, but do not occur necessarily on every full moon. This is due to the fact that the orbit of the moon varies, tilted around five degrees as it orbits our planet, and is, therefore, not always in the Earth’s shadow.
The intensity of the color the Moon will have can depend on pollution, cloud cover or the level of debris in the atmosphere.
Did you know? Certain doomsday preachers believe a red moon signals the apocalypse, the end of the world.
Scientists are looking forward to the event because they assure that the darkness that the lunar eclipse will produce on Earth, which will also be broadcast live from Namibia by different astronomical organizations, will allow astronomers to discover new celestial objects in the skies.
Two lunar eclipses occurred in 2018 – January 31 and July 28. The next lunar eclipse is predicted for 2021.