Astronomers in the Pacific region will be staring at the sky on Wednesday night to observe the reddish “super moon” during a total eclipse, the first total lunar eclipse in two years.
This remarkable spectacle will happen when the moon is in perigee, the point closest to Earth. From the Pacific Ocean to western North America, enthusiasts will be able to discover this huge red-orange moon.
This exceptional event will take place between 11:11 and 11:25 GMT, that is, in the evening in Sydney and before dawn in Los Angeles, that is, when the Moon will be in the shadow of the Earth.
At that time, the color of the lunar star will darken and become red, reminiscent of lights at sunrise or sunset.
Unlike a solar eclipse, this phenomenon does not pose any danger to vision.
This eclipse will be different because it coincides with the “supermoon,” meaning the full moon will appear relatively larger than average because it will be fairly close to Earth, at 358,000 km, which earned it this qualification.
At this point, the Moon appears 30% brighter and 14% larger than at its farthest point.
“This is very important,” said Andrew Jacobs, curator of astronomy at the Sydney Observatory who will bring together amateurs and experts at the party for the event.
“I’m expecting a clear night,” he added.
The event will be broadcast live, and 20,000 people have already registered.
For those looking to enjoy this remarkable spectacle, Mr. Jacobs believes the scene will be most spectacular in “Australia, New Zealand and much of the Pacific”.
“The American continent will be able to observe it early in the morning, but (they) will not necessarily see all parts of the eclipse.”
This “super moon” could not be observed from Europe, Africa and the Middle East.
Throughout history, eclipses, be they lunar or solar, have been a bad omen, especially among the Incas.
Some Australian Aboriginal communities saw this as a sign that someone who had gone was injured or killed.
Those who miss the show on Wednesday will have to wait until 2033 to witness the next “Bloody Moon,” as Americans call it.