First Total Lunar Eclipse of the Year; Here’s all you need to know

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There’s a chance you may be able to catch a glimpse of a total lunar eclipse and super blood moon will take place on Sunday night. Astronomers and skywatchers are eagerly waiting the visual treat as super blood moon will take place on May 16 2022.

The upcoming lunar eclipse will be the first one in the year 2022 and will last for around 85 minutes in total, which makes it the longest total lunar eclipse since 2018.

Sunday’s total lunar eclipse will be the first of three this year, but it may not be visible if its too cloudy. Unlike solar eclipses that last minutes at best, lunar eclipses last hours, so it’s possible that you will be able to catch a portion of the eclipse.

The partial eclipse begins at 10:27 p.m. Sunday which according to Indian Standard Time will be 7.57am on Monday as the moon passes into the umbra, or the darker central portion of the earth’s shadow. The total lunar eclipse will start an hour later. It will end at 12.53am EST (10.15am IST).

The eclipse season

The total lunar eclipse happens two weeks after a partial solar eclipse that happened on April 30, 2022. These two eclipses happen during a single eclipse season. The length of an eclipse season is usually around 35 days when it is very common to see around 2 or 3 eclipses happen.

Why are lunar eclipses red?

What you are actually seeing during a lunar eclipse is all the sunsets and all the sunrises around the world simultaneously shown on the moon. Eclipses happen as the moon, earth and sun line up, with earth blocking the sun.

But sunlight filters through the earth’s atmosphere with just the longer red wavelengths of light making their way through, while shorter blue light is scattered. This is the same process that creates beautiful Carolina blue skies.

Are lunar eclipses rare?

Lunar eclipses can only occur around a full Moon when the Moon, Earth and Sun are lined up, but they don’t happen each month. The Moon’s orbit is tilted about 5º which causes it to miss the shadow cast by Earth more often than pass through it. When it grazes that shadow, a partial lunar eclipse is created. When it passes completely through, a total solar eclipse is created.

The next eclipse season

In October-November, there will be another eclipse season and during this period, a partial solar eclipse on October 25 2022, and a total lunar eclipse on November 7-8 2022.

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