Wellington: Earth’s shadow crept across the moon on Wednesday night as people in New Zealand and around the world waited for a cosmic event known as a super blood moon.
As the eclipse deepens, it seems that half of the moon has disappeared. The other half looked blurry in the center, bright on the outer edge, and the last remnants of the gleaming sphere had already risen above the horizon.
A super blood moon is when a total lunar eclipse coincides with a super moon, that is, when the moon is very close to the earth and appears brighter than normal.
For about 15 minutes, as the moon moves fully into Earth’s shadow, the moon will appear to turn red. The eclipse began as the moon edged into the Earth’s outer shadow, called the penumbra. The full eclipse was due to take place between 11:11 p.m. and 11:25 p.m.
“It’s our turn,” said John Rowe, an educator at the Stardome Observatory & Planetarium in Auckland, New Zealand. “We are in a prime position for it. The moon is really high in the sky for us, and everyone should be able to see it.”
Rowe likes to imagine it as if he’s standing on the moon. The Earth would come across and block out the sun. The reddish light around the edges would be the sunsets and sunrises happening at that time on Earth, projected onto the moon’s surface. Pretty cool, he reckons.
He said that it is difficult to know the exact color of the moon in advance because it depends on the amount of dust in the atmosphere, global weather and other factors.
New Zealand, Australia, and other parts of the Pacific and East Asia will see the show before midnight, while night owls in Hawaii and western North America will see the show early in the morning.
The sky gazelle on the east coast of the United States will be unlucky because the moon will set and the sun will rise. Europe, Africa and West Asia will miss everything.
In Hong Kong, Dickson Fu left his work place early to watch the solar eclipse on the promenade near Sai Kung.
Mr. Fu, Chairman of the Hong Kong Sky Observer Association, chose this special location because it will give him a clear view of the lunar eclipse.
“Since the last few years, I have become more interested in taking pictures. In the past few days, I have conducted rehearsals and conducted lunar eclipse tests on cameras and lenses,” said Mr. Fu. The high school era in the 1990s.
For those who live in places where the eclipse is invisible, there will be live broadcasts. Weather permitting, everyone around the world will be able to dip into the moon that is brighter than usual.
It’s the first total lunar eclipse in more than two years. While the total eclipse will be just 15 minutes, the entire show will last five hours, as Earth’s shadow gradually covers the moon, then starts to ebb.
The color is the result of the sunrises and sunsets in Earth’s atmosphere projected onto the surface of the eclipsed moon.
The moon will be more than 220,000 miles (357,460 kilometers) away at its fullest. It’s this proximity, combined with a full moon, that qualifies it as a supermoon, making it appear slightly bigger and more brilliant in the sky. Unlike a solar eclipse, there’s no harm in looking at an eclipsed moon.