Tuesday, August 28, 2007

Lunar Eclipse

In just a few hours, the second lunar this year will occur, and will be best seen in the western portions of North and South America. (AP)
People in Europe, Africa or the Middle East, who had the best view of the last total lunar eclipse in March, won't see this one because the moon will have set when the partial eclipse begins at 4:51 a.m. EDT. The full eclipse will begin an hour later at 5:52 a.m. EDT.
NASA has a great webpage about tonight's total lunar eclipse. (image credit) I guess those in the Eastern part of the US (like me) will only have about 30 minutes to see it. I know I'll definitely be up by then, because, hey, I'm on call tonight. And, you know what they say about being on call with the lunar eclipse....

Update: When I first posted this (six hours ago), the moon was full and high in the southeastern sky. Over the past few hours, while I was getting some winks and answering my pager, I saw the moon slowly move to the southeastern sky and closer to the horizon.

Something unusual for northeastern Ohio is a sky without any clouds at all. It happens around here maybe 2-3 times a year at night, and tonight was one of those nights. As 5:52 am got closer and closer, I saw less and less of that full moon that was there at the beginning of the night. Then, it happened - Total lunar eclipse.

Wow! I've never seen anything like it. Better than any picture than I've ever seen. Better than any astronomy class than I've ever been to. I tried to take a picture of it, but even that could not do it justice. What a great start to the day!


Cathy said...

Dr. A., it is about 5:20AM right now. Are you watching it? we are. Beautiful? Just an hour ago was a full bright moon with moonbeams shouting out all over and now its about half covered.

Cathy said...

your right, it was awesome. I slept most of the day yesterday after having an EGD so we were up all night. We sat on the balcony except when I sent you this last comment and watched the whole thing. I also have never seen anything like it.

Will I ever get to see it again?

Dr. A said...

Oh Cathy, I think you'll be able to see another one. In fact the next one will be in just a few months. Hopefully, it will be another cloudless night to fully enjoy the experience.

Margaret Polaneczky, MD (aka TBTAM) said...

Darn! I missed it.

Here's a photo I took of an eclipse last year with my little digital camera set on AUTO and held up to me telscope:


I love eclipses..

scalpel said...

I looked for it but the moon wasn't visible from here. Too many clouds, I think.

Chrysalis said...

I think the next one is on March 3rd.

HP said...

We had a fabulous view here in Sydney. Clear night, starry skies and a shooting star thrown in to boot *brag brag*