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Red Lunar Eclipse

Lunar eclipses aren’t that rare, at least one happens every year, but the moon isn’t always completely eclipsed.  When this happens, it’s because the earth is directly in between the sun and the moon, thus preventing the suns light from reflecting off the moon.  This is called totality and it has another cool effect, it causes the moon to appear red after it comes out from the eclipse.  The reason for this is that the rays of light, coming from the sun, pass through our atmosphere and the particles in the atmosphere make it look as though the moon is red.  Ancient civilisations have feared the red moon believing it was a bad omen, in actual fact the same process, light passing through our atmosphere, is the reason the sky is blue.

In four years there will be another red lunar eclipse, but last night one happened right above Ireland.  People all over the country occasionally peaked out their windows indifferently, each one wondering if they would see something amazing.  Most were disappointed, briefly, because they couldn’t see anything.  The reason for this is that the moon eclipsed while rising so it literally rose into the eclipse.  This meant that only people with a clear view of the horizon got to actually see the eclipse.

Living in the city I couldn’t see it, but I did try my best, even going as far as standing looking out the window in my attic.  From there I could see people walking outside from time to time, taking a look up, making sure no one saw them stargazing and then walk back inside.  It would have been interesting to see it, but remember that the international space station should be visible for the next few weeks so keep an eye out, especially if you’re in the UK or Ireland.

What do you think?  Did you see the red lunar eclipse?  Have you ever seen one?  Let me know by voting and leaving a comment below.  Also don’t forget to subscribe and if you like this post show it by clicking the like button.

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One response

  1. Amy

    I was kinda excited about it but unfortunately it was too cloudy so I seen absolutely nothing. Have to wait another 4 years now and hopefully then it a clear sky.

    June 17, 2011 at 12:39 am

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