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Longest lunar eclipse this century in three weeks

July 5, 2018 Headline News No Comments Email Email

A lunar eclipse coming up later this month, the longest this century, will turn the moon blood red – but it’s unlikely to contribute much to ‘eclipse tourism’.

Australians will be in a prime position to view it but eclipse tourism generally centres around solar eclipses, which are rarer than lunar eclipses, though the moon can put on a good show too – weather permitting.

Saturday 28 July 2018 will see longest lunar eclipse of this century – with the penumbral eclipse lasting 236 minutes, or slightly less than four hours.

A penumbral eclipse is when the outer shadow of Earth falls on the moon’s face.

For those in Australia’s eastern states, witnessing the event will involve getting up early – or not going to bed – as it starts at about 3.15am and the partial eclipse begins at 4.24am, before the full eclipse at 5.30am. The maximum will be at 6.21am but the sky is getting light by then and the moon will be very low on the horizon and will then dip below it.

For those in Australia’s west, all of those times are two hours earlier.

Total lunar eclipse

Total lunar eclipses lasting over 100 minutes are due in 2029, 2047 and 2094 – but they won’t last as long as this one.

Written by Peter Needham

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