All moon-admiring folks can rejoice as today marks a historical lunar eclipse day, bringing a red moon to the sky. The phenomenon of Earth blocking the Moon’s light coming from the sun always seems to dazzle people. Today’s particular lunar eclipse is reported to be the longest in 580 years, as it will continue for 6 hours.
The red moon is supposed to start late at night from Thursday, well into early Friday. The phenomenon of a lunar eclipse is not that uncommon, it occurs when the Earth comes in between the Sun and the Moon, blocking the Sun’s light that makes the Moon visible to us from so far away.
Astronomy and Astrology enthusiasts find such instances of peculiar lunar eclipse particularly endearing, as the Moon’s ability to be a planetary-mass object dangles somewhere between a planet and a star. Will Dowd, from The Lunar Dispatch on Substack writes, “We’re used to ruby sunsets, but there’s something about a blood-red moon that awakens the primal imagination. If we were ancient pagans, no doubt we’d be sacrificing goats (and possibly neighbors) on stone altars tonight.”
This one will be the second lunar eclipse of 2021, appearing larger on the western part. The partial status of the phenomenon relies on the fact that it will not cover the entire Moon’s surface, falling short of just a minor part to make it a full eclipse. Regardless, 97.4% of the moon will be covered in the Earth’s shadow, leaving the southernmost part of the moon outside that shadow.
There is a live recording for those who end up missing it for any reason or simply want to catch a glimpse later on. Space.com also has multiple guides and hacks on how you can prepare, photograph, and celebrate the time you end up staying up for the lunar eclipse. The phenomenon will be most easily witnessed by Northern parts of America, with some parts of South America, Polynesia, and other continents such as Australia, Asia able to catch the moment. There are no health concerns such as keeping glasses handy, for the lunar eclipse as you would for the solar eclipse. The only slight change could be in your sleep schedule, in case you decide to witness it in real-time.