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Published: Mon, July 30, 2018
Research | By Jennifer Evans

World treated to incredible blood moon

World treated to incredible blood moon

Parts of Europe, Eastern Africa, Australia, and South America will see different phases of the eclipse, but will miss out on parts of the penumbral, partial, or total phases.

Incredibly, the Moon was entirely in Earth's shadow (totality), turning it a dark blood red, for a full 1 hour and 43 minutes. Additionally, Mars and the sun will be on exact opposite sides of the Earth and will shine its best.

Australians eager to catch a glimpse of a once-in-a-lifetime "blood moon" set their alarms for early on Saturday morning in order to catch the 4.24am eclipse.

"It is a very unusual coincidence to have a total lunar eclipse and Mars at opposition on the same night", said Robert Massey, deputy executive director of the Royal Astronomical Society, who will try to watch the eclipse from the Mediterranean Sea. The period of totality for this eclipse will last 1 hour and 2 minutes. When the moon is farther away, it orbits Earth more slowly - meaning it will take its time as it passes through Earth's shadow. "Bloody" referred to the moon during the Eclipse.

While not all will be able to see, many will notice its effect - a Red Moon.

In Britain, for example, the lunar eclipse will last throughout the evening, beginning when the moon rises at 8:50 p.m. local time. Some light, though, still reaches it because it is bent by the earth's atmosphere.

During the alignment, sunlight hits the earth's atmosphere which has a strong blue haze due to its oceans.

The view of the eclipsed moon and the sun is possible, weather allowing, because the rays of light from the sun and moon refract, or bend, around the earth's atmosphere.

The moon also plotted a fairly long path across the Earth's disk-shaped shadow.

"The Earth doesn't rotate far enough this time around for anyone in North America - the U.S. and Alaska - to see the eclipse but there are other eclipses that we don't see, there's always a little bit of the Earth that misses out".

"It will be visible from 9:30.p.m. and last till 11:22 p.m".

The length of the eclipse is determined by the alignment of the sun, Earth and the moon, as well as the distance between the moon and our planet.

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