After the Geminid meteor shower in December 2017 comes another spectacular and rare celestial treat for the space lovers and stargazers. The “Super Blue Blood Moon,” which is comprised of a Blue Moon, a supermoon, and a total lunar eclipse will occur all in January 2018.
There will be two full moons that will happen in January 2018. This is referred to as the “Blue Moon,” in which two full moons happen in the same calendar month. The first full moon will take place on the night of Jan.1 or the morning of Jan. 2. Meanwhile, the second full moon will occur on the night of Jan. 31 or the morning of Feb. 1. Its occurrences depend on the place you live.
The full moon on the night of Jan. 31 is not only a Blue Moon but also a Supermoon and the second largest and brightest full moon of 2018. The supermoon happens when the moon’s perigee is at its closest approach to planet Earth in a single orbit, in which this time it will take place on the night of Jan. 30. That is one day before the moon reaches its fullness. At the same time, a total lunar eclipse that happens once the moon passed into the shadow of the Earth will occur on January 31, according to Space.
Meanwhile, a Blood Moon is referred to as a total lunar eclipse. It is called Blood Moon because the fully eclipsed Moon turns into a reddish color. This is the time in which the Sun, Earth, and the Moon form a straight line. The planet Earth obstructs the direct sunlight from reaching the Moon. The Sun’s light casts Earth’s shadow on the Moon, which during the eclipse is located behind the planet Earth. The shadow envelops the Moon resulting in a total lunar eclipse, according to Time and Date.
In New York, the first full moon will occur at 9:24 p.m. local time on Jan. 1. Meanwhile, in U.K., gazers could view it at 2:24 a.m. local time. In Hawaii, the full moon will brighten the night sky at 4:24 p.m. local time. Places in eastern Asia and eastern Australia could not view the first full moon until Jan. 2 and the second full moon until the morning of Feb. 1.
The total lunar eclipse on Jan. 31 will catch most the attention of the moon watchers. According to NASA, the supermoon will be about 223,068 miles or 358,994 kilometers from the planet Earth. The average distance of the Moon from planet Earth is about 238,855 miles or 384,400 km. So, it is quite a distance closer to Earth. This will occur the day before the eclipse on Jan. 30 at 4:58 a.m., according to Space.