Red moon and sparkling Mars delight stargazers

Muriel Hammond
July 29, 2018

The total eclipse will last for an estimated one hour and 43 minutes in the prime viewing region, NASA predicts, with the entire event lasting close to four hours.

The next total lunar eclipse in the United Kingdom will take place on January 19 2019.

But those in North America and other parts of the Western Hemisphere are out of luck, as the eclipse will be happening during daytime hours.

Eventually, our planet completely blocked light from the sun, turning the white orb into an eerie, blood red spot in the night sky.

What is a blood moon?

"The blood moon is definitely a prophetic sign [of the end times]", one prominent YouTube preacher (whom Live Science prefers not to name) said in a recent video.

Curiosity and awe have greeted a complete lunar eclipse, the longest one of this century and visible in much of the world.

During a total lunar eclipse, Earth blocks direct sunlight from reaching the Moon.

Here are some of the most googled questions about the lunar eclipse answered.

Avid astronomers and amateur stargazers the world over were treated to an incredible lunar light show when the moon transformed from its usual bright color to an orb of burned orange and red for almost two hours.

The lunar eclipse is coined "blood moon" for the color change of the moon, as seen from Earth, while it is immersed in Earth's shadow.

Although no longer directly illuminated by the Sun, the moon still catches light filtered and bent by the Earth's atmosphere.

According to Hindu beliefs, celestial bodies like the sun and moon emit negative energy during an eclipse and so some temples in India were closed to minimize any disturbance.

The Mars opposition occurs when the Sun, Earth and Mars align in a straight line.

"During a very dark eclipse the moon may be nearly invisible".

He said the eclipse went for a "long" 104 minutes mainly because it "went through the centre of the shadow, [meaning] it had a longer path that it had to take to get through the shadow" and the moon is at its furthest point from the Earth.

During a regular supermoon, the full moon appears up to 14 percent larger and 30 percent brighter than usual. This is what makes it appear so brightly in our sky, beginning early Friday morning. - AFP A "blood moon" eclipse is pictured with a sculpture by the American artist Jonathan Borofsky "Woman walking to the sky" in Strasbourg, eastern France.

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