Super Blood Moon Eclipse visible Sunday from Oregon - if the weather cooperates


    The supermoon lunar eclipse captured as it moved over NASA’s Glenn Research Center on September 27, 2015. Image credit: NASA/Rami Daud

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    EUGENE, Ore. - The super blood moon eclipse Sunday will be visible across North America - if the weather cooperates where you live.

    The forecast for the night of January 20 is not looking favorable at the moment, with showers in the forecast.

    But changes are still possible.

    Weather-permitting, he show begins at 6:36 p.m. PST when the Moon begins to enter the penumbra, the outer cone-shaped shadow of the Earth.

    Over the next 57 minutes, the Moon will dim slightly.

    The real show begins at 7:33 p.m. as the Moon enters the umbra of the Earth's shadow.

    "Some say that during this part of the eclipse, the Moon looks as if it has had a bite taken out of it," Lyle Tavernier at the Jet Propulsion Lab wrote. "That 'bite' gets bigger and bigger as the Moon moves deeper into the shadow."

    The Moon will completely enter the Earth's shadow at 8:41 p.m., the start of the total lunar eclipse. The moment of "greatest eclipse" happens at 9:12 p.m.

    That's when Tavernier said the eclipse earns the "blood" name.

    As the Moon moves completely into the umbra, something interesting happens: The Moon begins to turn reddish-orange. The reason for this phenomenon? Earth’s atmosphere. As sunlight passes through it, the small molecules that make up our atmosphere scatter blue light, which is why the sky appears blue. This leaves behind mostly red light that bends, or refracts, into Earth’s shadow. We can see the red light during an eclipse as it falls onto the Moon in Earth’s shadow. This same effect is what gives sunrises and sunsets a reddish-orange color.

    And why "super" blood moon?

    "The January 2019 lunar eclipse takes place when the full moon is at or near the closest point in its orbit to Earth – a time popularly known as a supermoon," Tavernier said. "This means the Moon is deeper inside the umbra shadow and therefore may appear darker."

    The Moon will begin to exit the umbra at 9:43 p.m. This process continues until 10:50 p.m. By 11:48 p.m., the eclipse will be completely over.

    So ... what if clouds obscure the sky?

    You can still watch online.


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