If that title doesn’t get you interested in astronomy, nothing will! Sunday, January 20, 2019 the “Super Blood Wolf Moon” eclipse will be visible throughout the United States from around 8:30 p.m. (Central Time) until almost 2:00 a.m.
In the area, the NIU Observatory at 218 Normal Rd in DeKalb will be open from 6:00 p.m. – 12.00 a.m. to view the supermoon and lunar eclipse. You might even be able to meet some DeKalb County Online friends after 9:15 p.m.
The full moon in January is called a supermoon, because it occurs when the moon is closest to the Earth, making it appear slightly brighter and closer.
The “wolf” is in reference to it being in the month of January, as each month’s full moon has a different Native American name.
The “blood” has to do with the color of the moon during a lunar eclipse. When the Earth is between the moon and the sun, the moon enters the darkest part of the Earth’s shadow, called the umbra. Some red wavelengths of light pass through the Earth’s atmosphere and reflect off the face of the moon, giving it a light crimson hue.
The total eclipse of the moon will last about an hour, with a partial eclipse for about an hour before and an hour after. The partial eclipse will start at 9:34 p.m. Central Time. The total eclipse begins at 10:41 p.m. and will last until 11:43 p.m. Then, the partial eclipse will continue until 12:51 a.m. The eclipse should be viewable with the naked eye, weather permitting, throughout the entire United States, with the exception of Hawaii.
If clouds block your view of the eclipse, you can still watch it live online via the Virtual Telescope Project.
If you do happen to miss this one, the next total lunar eclipse won’t be until May 26, 2021—and that one won’t be as visible in the United States. And you’ll have to wait until 2037 for another Super Blood Wolf Moon Eclipse, which will be the final one of this century.