Here’s where you can watch the lunar event of the century if you’re in south India.

Supermoon lunar eclipse AND Blue Moon on Jan 31 You dont want to miss this trilogy
news Astronomy Monday, January 29, 2018 - 14:27

What are the odds of witnessing an event that generations before you haven’t? Quite literally a once in a lifetime opportunity? Pretty slim, we’d say.

Wednesday will see the occurrence of a lunar trilogy - a Supermoon, lunar eclipse and a Blue Moon. It hasn’t happened in over 150 years!

A Blue Moon is when it is the second full moon in a month. A lunar eclipse is when the moon comes in the earth’s shadow. At this time, the sun, moon and the earth are in one line, with the earth in the middle. A Supermoon is when the moon is the closest to the earth in a single orbit and coincides with a full moon.

The Blue Moon occurs once every two-and-a-half years.

NASA says that Supermoons appear 14% to 30% brighter than full moons.

“It’s hard for our eyes to distinguish these small changes in size when the moon is high amidst the vastness of the night sky. But any time you catch a full moon as it rises or sets, while it’s suspended low on the horizon beaming through the silhouettes of trees or buildings, its apparent size might make you do a double-take,” says NASA.

NASA said that the moon will have an “eerie, fainter-than-normal”, and since it is often cast in a reddish hue, totally eclipsed moons are also called ‘blood Moons’.

P Iyamperumal, the director of the Tamil Nadu Science and Technology Centre told the Times of India that the moon will pass through the partial shadow phase at 4:21 pm, the more shadow phase at 5:18 pm and the total darkness phase at 6:21 pm. The total lunar eclipse would end at 7:37 pm and it will be a partial lunar eclipse at 8:41 pm.

The eclipse is perfectly safe to viewed with the naked eye.

Where can you see it?

In Chennai, the TNSTC will be making provisions for the enthusiasts to view the event, where they will have four telescopes and projectors from 6:45 pm to 9 pm. The Tamil Nadu Astronomy Association will be setting up telescopes in schools for parents and students. 

In Thiruvananthapuram, the Priyadarshini Planetarium, situated in the Kerala Science and Technology Museum (KSTMM) will also be setting up telescopes. 

“It can be viewed only partially through telescope, yet it will be ready. Before that an awareness class will be held with astrophysicist from 4 pm onwards, then after a tea break, the sky observation will begin and the visitors can enjoy the moon after sunset,” KSTMM director K Arul Jerald Prakash told ToI.

In Bengaluru, the Breakthrough Science Society will be organising public viewings at Malleshwaram, Rajajinagar, Basavanagudi, Yeshwanthpur, Basaweshwanagar and Kengeri Satellite Town.

In Hyderabad, the Astronomy Club at the University of Hyderabad will be getting together to view the spectacle.

Apart from this, you can also check if you can view it here.

livestream will also be available on YouTube for those who may not be able to view it.

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