During this weekend’s supermoon spectacle, there will be several phenomena taking place at the same: supermoon, blood moon, wolf moon, and total lunar eclipse. So what does this all mean?
Every now and then the moon appears larger than usual to us due to its temporarily close proximity to Earth. When this happens during a full moon we get what’s known as a supermoon. The first supermoon of the year will take place on January 20-21. On this night a total lunar eclipse (which is only possible when there’s a full moon present) is expected to take place from 11:41 p.m. until 12:43 a.m. During this time the moon will appear red due to the Earth’s shadow being casted on the moon as it comes between the moon and the sun; this occurrence is commonly referred to as a “Blood Moon.”
According to NASA, the total lunar eclipse and supermoon will be “one of the sky’s most dazzling shows.” This unique spectacle will also be considered a Wolf Moon (which is usually used to describe the first full moon of January). All of these things happening at once makes for a rather long title of “Super Blood Wolf Moon Eclipse.”
This will be the last one of its kind until 2021, so if you’re awake try to find a place to see it! Unfortunately this weekend is expected to be a complete mess when it comes to weather, with snow and cloudiness forecasted for Sunday night by the National Weather Service. However, hopefully you can catch a glimpse of it during the hour-long eclipse. According to NASA, the entire event will take place from 9:36 p.m. until 2:48 a.m., but the full eclipse will by visible between 11:41 p.m. and 12:43 a.m.
featured image source: Photo Modified: flickr/Bob Jagendorf/CC by 2.0