Friday morning, look to the chilly November skies. The moon will be nearly 100 percent full and experiencing the longest partial lunar eclipse of this century. The moon will change colors as it passes through the Earth's shadow. Are you ready for it?
What Is a Partial Lunar Eclipse?
A lunar eclipse happens when the Earth passes in front of the sun, preventing the light from reflecting off the moon. A partial lunar eclipse or near-total eclipse occurs when part of the moon is obstructed by the Earth's umbral shadow. This will cause the moon to appear a reddish-orange color.
Partial lunar eclipses and total eclipses are the easiest to see with the naked eye or a telescope, mostly due to the shadow that falls across the moon and the reddish-orange color it turns.
What Time Will the Eclipse Begin?
The eclipse will begin in the early hours of Friday morning, at about 1 a.m. EST (10 p.m. PST). The eclipse will take several hours, reaching maximum around 4 a.m. EST (1 a.m. PST). Depending on where you are located across North America and depending on the weather conditions, this will be an eclipse to remember. The last time a partial lunar eclipse lasted this long was 1440, right around the time when the Incas were constructing Machu Picchu. The next time a partial lunar eclipse of this length occurs, it will be 2669.
If you miss the partial lunar eclipse this year, there will be a total lunar eclipse in November 2022. Stay tuned!