Blotting Out the Moon

Total lunar eclipse coincides with solstice

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    NEWSLETTERS

    Flickr/TimKelley
    A total lunar eclipse

    Commentary
    by Bruce Felps

    The moon goes full tonight -- then it goes away.

    The celestial seasons bring a rare event to the night sky, starting a bit after midnight when the Earth’s penumbra — shadow to you and me — starts covering the full moon. The moon fades to copper about 1:40 a.m., it stays that way for more than an hour.

    NASA has all the details here and here.

    A total lunar eclipse last happened two years ago so you might be a little burned out on the event, but this one comes with a little something extra. It coincides with the winter solstice, and, according to these guys here, that make it rare, indeed.

    Last time these two hooked up it was 1639 and it won’t happen again until 2084, and that seems a bit asymmetrical in terms of celestial events. The broken English on that site also draws a little skepticism, but it’s hard to find a good web-translator these days.

    Anyway, you can see the eclipse with your eyes by walking outside and looking up. It’ll be visible throughout North Texas and North America, South America, parts of Asia and Western Europe for that matter.

    What? Did you think we were special or something?


    Bruce Felps owns and operates East Dallas Times, an online community news outlet serving the White Rock Lake area. He doesn’t remember that Beatles cartoon show being so horrendously bad.