Wednesday, 24 October, 2018

Rare 'blue supermoon' total eclipse to occur in Singapore on 31 January

The supermoon in the night sky The supermoon in the night sky
Eleanor Moreno | 05 January, 2018, 14:42

Three separate celestial events - a supermoon, a blue moon and a full lunar eclipse - will occur simultaneously on January 31.

The lunar eclipse, wherein the Earth's shadow will cover the moon, will be seen from 6:49 p.m. on January 31 until 12:09 a.m. on February 1. The best views of the middle-of-the-night eclipse will be in central and eastern Asia, Indonesia, New Zealand and Australia, although Alaska and Hawaii will get a glimpse, too. On America's East Coast the eclipse will start coming into view at 5:51 a.m. and will give viewers in cities like NY only a small window to see the reddish moon. Moonset will intervene for the rest of North and Central America, however. As per reports, moon's lower half shall be visible brighter than the upper half. 2018 started with a supermoon on January 1, and according to the experts, it will end with something that sounds ten times more epic: a Super Blue Blood Moon.

On January 31, some U.S-based stargazers will also be treated to a total lunar eclipse.

This event has been dubbed as "Wolf Moon" by NASA.


Taking place once in every two years and eight months on average, a blue moon, named after the rarity of its occurrence, is a second full moon within a month.

The last time two blue moons occurred within a year was 19 years ago, said Mok Li Hui, a Science Educator at the Science Centre Singapore (SCS). The moon is responsible for providing a rhythm to the tidal waves on the surface of the Earth even when it is located at a distance of 385,000km from our planet. Astronomers have to go all the way back to March 31, 1866, to find the last "Blue Blood Moon". Every time the moon orbits the Earth, in 29.5 days, it will reach close to the Earth, and occasionally the adjacent location will be close to the date of the full moon i.e., a supermoon. "Folks in the eastern United States, where the eclipse will be partial, will have to get up in the morning to see it", said Noah Petro, a research scientist from NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center on the agency's website. This occurrence is also known as "blood moon", based on the reddish hue.

Scientifically, Simpson said, the event is pretty meaningless.

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