'Blood moon' to dazzle sky gazers for 21st Century's longest lunar eclipse

A blood moon rises over Cairo Friday

A blood moon rises over Cairo Friday

It won't be visible in the USA, but can be seen in parts of Africa, the Middle East, Europe, South America, Australia and Asia - depending on the weather. "In the middle of a lunar eclipse it can look as if a red planet has taken up residence near the Earth - they are both eerie and lovely and I'll certainly be looking out for it!"

Incredibly, the Moon was entirely in Earth's shadow (totality), turning it a dark blood red, for a full 1 hour and 43 minutes.

The longest lunar eclipse of this century will coincide with Mars' closest approach to Earth in 15 years on Friday.

Australians eager to catch a glimpse of a once-in-a-lifetime "blood moon" set their alarms for early on Saturday morning in order to catch the 4.24am eclipse.

The next lunar eclipse will be on January 21, 2019. For viewers in India, the eclipse, both partial and the total, will be visible in its entirety from all parts of the country.

At about 8.30pm the earth began to pass between the setting sun and the moon casting its shadow across the surface. You also are in luck on that last point, because it is safe to look at the blood moon without special eye protection - NASA says so.

Chandra Grahan or Lunar Eclipse 2018 tonight LIVE UPDATES: During this rare phenomena, the Moon will turn bright red and it will be visible in India as well.

U.S. won't see upcoming lunar eclipse: How to view it online

While other colours in the spectrum are blocked and scattered by the Earth's atmosphere, red light tends to make it through easier.

It will be the longest-lasting eclipse this century.

The full eclipse took place at 2022 GMT and could be seen in Europe, Russia, Africa, the Middle East and much of Asia and Australia, although cloud clouds obscured the moon in some places.

The moon also plotted a fairly long path across the Earth's disk-shaped shadow.

In ancient times, this phenomenon was thought to be a bad omen, but now it is understood that it is simply due to the scattering of light by the air in our atmosphere.

The next eclipse to last that long will occur on June 9, 2123, but it will not be visible from Australia.

A total lunar eclipse happens when Earth takes position in a straight line between the moon and sun.

Great-grandmother and kids killed in California wildfires
Some 536 structures have been destroyed, with a count by the Associated Press finding that at least 300 of those are homes. When they returned Friday, virtually nothing was left but fine particles of ash. "It's pretty emotional", Terri Hill said.

Latest News