"Super blood wolf moon" will light up the night sky Sunday

Michele Stevens
January 21, 2019

If that wasn't enough, the eclipse will be made even more spectacular by the fact that it will be accompanied by a "super blood wolf moon".

The name "super blood wolf" refers to multiple features of the upcoming eclipse.

A lunar eclipse happens when the moon passes through Earth's shadow as our planet goes around the Sun.

"The Sun's red light is scattered much less by air, and is bent by Earth's atmosphere in a process called refraction, traveling all the way through it to light up the Moon's surface". Some folks are also throwing "wolf moon" into the mix, a name given to any full moon that happens in the month of January.

Astrophysicist Patrick Hartigan told the Associated Press, "It not only is a supermoon and it's a total eclipse, but the total eclipse also lasts pretty long". But the gist is that this Sunday, the Earth will block the sun's rays from reaching the moon, and it's likely to look pretty awesome. The moon will get darker and redder as it moves into the heart of the shadow, with the total eclipse peaking at 12:12 p.m. ET - the maximum eclipse.

The Royal Museums Greenwich has said the full lunar eclipse will begin at 4.41am, will be at its peak at 5.12am, and will end at 5.43am. That's why an eclipsed moon is sometimes known as a blood moon. The super moon is the first of three this year.

The eclipse is set to start at 2.36am on Monday January 21, though people are unlikely to see anything until later in the morning.

While the lunar event is happening, football fans watching or attending the AFC Championship game between the New England Patriots and Kansas City Chiefs may be able to spot the eclipse.

Hence, January's total lunar eclipse is now the super blood wolf moon. Then an hour after that, if you've managed to stick it out for that long, the full Blood Moon will emerge at 11:41PM ET.

The final stages will begin shortly after that with the whole astronomical event wrapping up shortly before 1 a.m. Monday morning. The main event lasts about an hour. However, there is no official live stream available from NASA.

Cloudy weather can interfere with viewing, but experts say that unlike in the case of a solar eclipse, there is no need for special eyewear to step outside and view a lunar eclipse.

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