The second “supermoon” of January will occur on Tuesday and coincide with a total lunar eclipse visible before sunrise on Wednesday.
NASA is calling it a “super blue blood moon” because it’s the second full moon of the month, appears larger than normal due to its close approach, and will turn a customary red during the eclipse. But, you’ll have to rise early to see it best.
The Moon will make its closest approach to Earth–just 223,069 miles away–at 1:54 a.m. Pacific time on Tuesday morning. Then on Wednesday morning, the eclipse will begin at 2:51 a.m. and reach totality at 4:51 a.m., just before the Moon becomes completely full at 5:27 a.m.
NASA said the best viewing on the West Coast will be between 5 a.m. and 6 a.m. San Diego time on Wednesday.
“Weather permitting, the West Coast, Alaska and Hawaii will have a spectacular view of totality from start to finish,” said Gordon Johnston, program executive and lunar blogger at NASA headquarters in Washington.
The term “blood moon” comes from the reddish color of the Moon during total eclipse as it’s illuminated by sunlight filtered and refracted by the Earth’s atmosphere.
The term “blue moon” refers to the second full moon in a month. And “supermoon” refers to a full or new moon at the time of our cratered satellite’s closest approach to Earth.
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