Here's How You Can Actually Be a Scientist During Today's Lunar Eclipse

 (Image: AP)

(Image: AP)

With the century's longest lunar eclipse happening on Friday night, here's how you can be a scientist and feel like a smart-ass.

Parth Sharma
  • News18.com
  • Last Updated: July 27, 2018, 7:43 AM IST
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The blood moon is all set to appear in the sky on Friday night as we prepare for the longest lunar eclipse of the 21st century (P.S: The next longest lunar eclipse does not happen for another 105 years. Good luck waiting for it).

NASA is expecting the total lunar eclipse to last for 102 minutes, with the entire event lasting for more than 6 hours.

The eclipse will be visible from Europe, Africa, and the Middle East between sunset and midnight on July 27 and then between midnight and sunrise on July 28 in much of Asia and Australia.

But North America doesn't get to watch this one. They have to wait till 2123 when a lunar eclipse this long happens again.

As for New Delhi, the penumbra lunar eclipse (when the earth’s penumbra starts to touch the moon’s face) begins at 22:44 pm on Friday, July 27, and the total eclipse begins at 1:00 am on July 28, with the maximum eclipse being at 1:51 am. The penumbra eclipse ends at 4:58 am.

Also fun fact, you can watch the lunar eclipse with the naked eye. But if you have a really cool pair of binoculars or ever better a telescope, then use that to observe all the shadow and colour changes happening.

In ancient times, the lunar eclipse was regarded as a really bad omen as the moon conspicuously changed its colour (so much for being dramatic). So don’t be ticked off if your grandmother is being extraordinarily superstitious on Friday night because Twitterati too shared its fears about the eclipse affecting their zodiac signs:

Also, another fun fact, did you know that during the lunar eclipse the moon will appear in colours ranging from pale orange to deep red? So apparently this phenomenon happens as the sun's light filters through the Earth's atmosphere before it hits the moon. In layman terms, the effect is very similar to a sunset.

However, the shade and intensity of the moon’s colour during the eclipse has very little to do with the moon and a lot more with our own atmosphere. As for “our atmosphere” – well, gonna break the big news here, but don’t even expect it to be clean.

But you know, just in case it is “clean”, then the moon will appear to be very bright with an orange or even yellow shade. And if it’s dirty? Well, then the shades are just going to get darker and darker (much like our own miserable futures).

So, pretend you’re a scientist on Friday night and use the moon as a screen to detect the quality of your city's atmosphere. Make conclusions and feel good about being a smart-ass for, like, 5 minutes.

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