Breakdown: Why the moon will turn red

Breakdown: Why the moon will turn red

MEMPHIS, TN (WMC) - The only total lunar eclipse in 2019 is happening on Sunday, January 20, according to NASA. This lunar eclipse is called the “Super Blood Wolf Moon Eclipse.”

January’s full moon is sometimes referred to as the Wolf Moon. You combine that with the moon’s color during the eclipse which is expected to turn red and the moon’s close proximity to Earth and now you have a “Super Blood Wolf Moon Eclipse”.

This will be the last lunar eclipse of the decade. If you miss this one you have to wait until May 26, 2021, for the next display.

Lunar eclipses only happen when there is a full moon. The “Super Blood Wolf Moon” will be a total eclipse, which means the entire moon will pass through the Earth’s shadow and the moon is closest to the Earth in its monthly orbit. It’s close orbit to the to the Earth may make it appear slightly bigger than normal, according to NASA.

The edge of the moon will begin to enter the outer shadow of the Earth, this outer shadow is referred to as the penumbra, at 8:36 p.m. CST Sunday. At this point it may not be noticeable, according to NASA. It will be harder to see for the next hour as it moves deeper into the shadow.

The edge of the moon will begin entering the deepest part of Earth’s shadow also known as the umbra at 9:33 p.m. CST Sunday.

The moon will be all the way inside the Earth’s shadow by 10:41 p.m. CST, this is expected to lead into the big moment of the eclipse, which will come at 11:12 p.m. CST, according to NASA. The moon will look orange or reddish at this point.

The edge of the moon will begin to leave the umbra at 11:43 p.m. CST.

The eclipse will end at 1:48 a.m. CST Monday.

You won’t need anything special to for viewing but a telescope or binoculars will reveal more details, like the moon’s texture. Don’t forget to bundle up when stepping outside on the chilly January night.

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