Clouds hinder Perth’s view of longest blood moon and eclipse

Blood moon to appear for 21st century's longest lunar eclipse

A rare total lunar eclipse - expected to be the longest in the 21st century - is set to take place on Friday that will see the Earth's natural satellite turn blood red.

The entire event will last 3 hours and 55 minutes.

Mr Wullschleger said his image of the red moon above Brisbane City was taken about 20 minutes after the total eclipse began.

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Skygazers hoping to see the rare "blood moon" in the United Kingdom last night were left disappointed as clouds largely obscured the celestial phenomenon.

People in the Europe, the Middle East and the rest of Africa witnessed the celestial phenomenon between sunset and midnight, while those in Australia and eastern Asia saw the eclipse between midnight and dawn.

Sunlight passing through Earth's atmosphere will light the moon in a dramatic fashion, turning it red.

Priyanka Gupta, facilitator from Delhi's Manav Rachna School, showed various lunar eclipse slides and answered the children's queries.

Blood moon to appear for 21st century's longest lunar eclipse
The different phases of moon from Kochi Kerala

During the eclipse, the moon turned into a deep-copper-toned object, in what is commonly (but not scientifically) known as "blood moon".

Because the Moon is far away from Earth relatively speaking - its orbit is an ellipse, so it moves closer and further and looks larger and smaller from Earth.

Meanwhile frustrated crowds of would-be moon admirers gathered on a hill in cloudy north London consoled themselves by breaking into a rendition of Welsh singer Bonnie Tyler´s 1983 hit "Total eclipse of the heart".

When the moon moves into the conically shaped shadow of the earth, it goes from being illuminated by the sun to being dark.

How often does a blood moon occur? The long duration of this eclipse is partly due to the fact that the moon will make a near-central passage through Earth's umbra - the darkest, most central part of the shadow.

Some of the light from the sun still reaches the moon after it is bent by the earth's atmosphere, he added.

Viewers received an extra treat, with Mars competing for attention, sparkling brightly. The centre's curator, Ramswaroop, said: "The lunar eclipse will likely be for around six hours". They also asked about misconceptions such as avoiding having during eclipses.

After weeks of uninterrupted sunshine and cloudless skies, thunderstorms swept across swathes of the United Kingdom on Friday, veiling what was said to be the longest celestial event in the 21st century.

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