Friday, July 27, 2018

Total lunar eclipse: When to catch it in Singapore | The Straits Times

Total lunar eclipse: When to catch it in Singapore | The Straits Times

Total lunar eclipse: When to catch it in Singapore

Skywatchers here will be in for a treat in the wee hours of Saturday morning (July 28) as the longest total lunar eclipse of the century will be visible in its entirety in Singapore.

All eclipsevisibleNo eclipsevisibleEclipsevisibleat moonsetSingaporeEclipsevisibleat moonrise

Much of Europe, Asia, Australia, Africa and South America will be able to see at least some part of the eclipse happening on Saturday (July 28) - or Friday for some regions due to time differences.

It will last 1hr 43min.

Singapore is relatively lucky, as the total lunar eclipse can be viewed in its entirety from here.

What is a lunar eclipse?

A lunar eclipse occurs when the Moon passes directly behind the Earth, and is thus shrouded by its shadow.

It happens only during a full moon. The Sun and Moon need to be fairly exactly aligned, with the Earth in between them, for the event to happen.

The upcoming eclipse will also coincide with the Mars opposition, where the planet is on the side of the Earth opposite to the Sun.

Mars will be near its closest approach to Earth since 2003. The red planet will thus appear as a bright reddish "star" close to the Moon throughout the night.

When can you see the eclipse in Singapore?

You can watch the eclipse from 3.30am (Singapore time).

Lunar eclipses can be safely viewed by the naked eye. This is unlike solar eclipses, which can permanently damage the eyes if viewed without safety equipment.

"As the moon is very bright and not affected by light pollution, any spot that provides you a clear unobstructed view of the sky from overhead to the western horizon will be suitable," said Mr Albert Ho, president of The Astronomical Society of Singapore.

Mr Ho recommended a pair of binoculars or telescope to enhance viewing pleasure.

Read more about the cosmic event.

What are the different types of lunar eclipses?

Penumbral eclipse: The Moon passes through the faint penumbral portion of Earth's shadow. The effect is not noticeable to the untrained eye.

Partial lunar eclipse: Only a part of the Moon enters Earth's umbral shadow. Earth's shadow appears to take a bite out of the Moon.

Total lunar eclipse: The entire Moon passes through Earth's umbral shadow. The Moon appears completely red.

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