Friday, December 9, 2011

Lunar Eclipse!

Details here.

Western U.S. states to see unusual total lunar eclipse early Saturday morning

The moon exhibited a deep orange glow June 16, 2011, as the Earth cast its shadow in a total lunar eclipse as seen from Manila, Philippines, before dawn. The last total lunar eclipse of the year is Saturday, Dec. 10, 2011. And there won't be another one for three years. Viewers in the western half of the United States will have the best views Saturday well before dawn, Pacific and Mountain Standard Time. (Bullit Marquez - AP)
While the East Coast misses out, residents in central and western states will catch a unique total lunar eclipse Saturday morning. Where visible, the final lunar eclipse of 2011 promises to be eye-catching.
The eclipse will officially begin at 3:30 a.m. Pacific Standard Time (PST), but not until 4:45 a.m. PST will Earth’s umbral shadow start darkening the moon’s edges. Total eclipse is set to begin at 6:06 a.m., and last for 51 minutes.
Sky watchers in Northern California and the Pacific Northwest will see the fully eclipsed moon emerge from Earth’s shadow just before sunrise. Assuming clear conditions, the eclipsed moon will appear impressively large and low in the sky. Over the Rocky Mountains and northern Plains, the full moon will still be entirely in Earth’s shadow as it sets along the northwestern horizon. Farther east, from the Ohio Valley into the Southern Plains, observers will see the partially eclipsed moon set before it reaches totality.

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