Lunar eclipse is set to take place January 31


ALAMOSA – The Adams State University Zacheis Planetarium Director Dr. Robert Astalos, professor of physics, encourages the campus and community to view the full lunar eclipse on January 31.

The full moon on January 31 is the second of the month, the first being January 1. A second full moon in one calendar month is sometimes called a Blue Moon. And this Blue Moon will pass through the Earth’s shadow.

Blue Moons don’t look blue, but the eclipsed moon will turn a shade of reddish-orange. The moon starts entering the Earth’s umbra, the darkest part of Earth’s shadow, at 4:48 a.m. MST.  It will reach totality at 5:52 a.m., with greatest eclipse, the moon is deepest in the umbra, at 6:30 a.m. The moon will begin leaving the umbra at 7:07 a.m., shortly before it sets at 7:11 a.m. The exact time of moonset depends on the western horizon - it will be earlier if there are hills or mountains to the west.

“If you have never seen a total lunar eclipse before, it’s definitely worth getting up for,” Astalos said. “It is fascinating to see the partial phase progress across the face of the moon, and the color of the moon during totality is both beautiful and kind of eerie.”

Caption: A total lunar eclipse will happen the morning of January 31./Photo courtesy of Snopes.com


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