You know what they say: red sky at night – shepherd’s delight, red moon at night – probably worth popping out in the garden and having a little gander.
Tonight is one such night, with the Royal Astronomical Society claiming that up to 60 per cent of the moon’s surface will appear red or dark grey at the height of tonight’s partial lunar eclipse, which should be at around 10.30pm.
What makes this particular red moon extra special is that it will be taking place exactly 50 years on from when the US launched their moon landing mission Apollo 11 from Florida on 16 July 1969.
The voyage of course ended four days later when astronaut Neil Armstrong became the first man to step foot on the moon… Or did he?
Yes. Yes he did.
A launch to remember: Tune in tomorrow starting at 9:15am ET to hear from Apollo 11 astronaut Michael Collins as we count down to the exact moment when three humans lifted off from @NASAKennedy‘s Launch Pad 39A on a journey to walk on the Moon: https://t.co/mzKW5uV4hS #Apollo50th pic.twitter.com/FDa7zP5Jxd
— NASA (@NASA) July 15, 2019
But back to tonight, we are of course hoping for clear skies if we’re going to get the best of it. From the UK, the eclipse should kick off between 9pm and 10pm.
Dr Morgan Hollis, from the Royal Astronomical Society, advises finding a ‘low unobstructed horizon’ without tall buildings and trees to get the best view – which sounds pretty obvious to be fair.
According to the BBC, He said: “Unlike a solar eclipse it’s entirely safe to watch a lunar eclipse with the naked eye, so this one is fine.
“You don’t need any special equipment and it should be fairly warm as well, given temperatures recently. It should be good if the weather is clear and the conditions are clear.”
Lunar eclipses take place when the Earth crosses the path between the Sun and Moon, casting a shadow on the lunar surface.
In January we were treated to a rare and bad ass-sounding ‘super wolf blood moon’, which only occurs 28 times in a century. However, while most of us viewed it as a natural occurring phenomenon, others interpreted it as a prophetic warning that the end of the world was nigh.
Yet here we still are, for better or worse.