A cosmic show on May 26
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A cosmic show on May 26

There will be several free webcasts showing live views of the eclipse online

A cosmic show on May 26

People around the world will witness a super celestial event as the first lunar eclipse of 2021 will take place on May 26. In India, it will be visible at around 2:17 pm and will end at 7:19 pm. The total lunar eclipse would start at 4:47:39 am EDT according to NASA (National Aeronautics and Space Administration). 

This can be called a super lunar event and is going to be a special one for the sky watchers as super moon, lunar eclipse and red blood moon is going to coincide.

In India, the eclipse will only be visible partially at a few places in the eastern parts of the country. It will be best seen from Australia, parts of the United States, western South America, the Pacific and South-East Asia.

What’s a super moon?

 A super moon occurs when a full or new moon happens to be the closest to earth. The moon’s orbit around Earth is not perfectly circular. This means the moon’s distance from Earth varies as it goes around the planet. The closest point in the orbit, called the perigee, is roughly 28,000 miles closer to Earth than the farthest point of the orbit. A full moon that happens near the perigee is called a super moon.

Why is it super? 
The relatively close proximity of the moon makes it seem a little bit bigger and brighter than usual, though the difference between a super moon and a normal moon is usually hard to notice unless you’re looking at two pictures side by side.

How does a lunar eclipse work?
To see a lunar eclipse, you need to be on the night side of the Earth while the moon passes through the shadow. A lunar eclipse happens when the Earth’s shadow covers all or part of the moon. This can only happen during a full moon, so first, it helps to understand what makes a full moon.
Like the Earth, half of the moon is illuminated by the sun at any one time. A full moon happens when the Moon and the Sun are on opposite sides of the Earth. This allows you to see the entire lit-up side, which looks like a round disc in the night sky.
If the moon had a totally flat orbit, every full moon would be a lunar eclipse. But the moon’s orbit is tilted by about 5 degrees relative to Earth’s orbit. So, most of the time a full moon ends up a little above or below the shadow cast by the Earth.
But twice in each lunar orbit, the moon is on the same horizontal plane as both the Earth and Sun. If this corresponds to a full moon, the sun, the Earth and the moon will form a straight line and the moon will pass through the Earth’s shadow. This results in a total lunar eclipse.

Why does the moon look red?
When the moon is completely covered by Earth’s shadow it will darken, but doesn’t go completely black. Instead, it takes on a red colour, which is why total lunar eclipses are sometimes called red or blood moons.

Sunlight contains all colours of visible light. The particles of gas that make up Earth’s atmosphere are more likely to scatter blue wavelengths of light while redder wavelengths pass through. This is called Rayleigh scattering, and it’s why the sky is blue and sunrises and sunsets are often red.
In the case of a lunar eclipse, red light can pass through the Earth’s atmosphere and is refracted – or bent – toward the moon, while blue light is filtered out. This leaves the moon with a pale reddish hue during an eclipse.
How to watch super flower blood moon online? 
To see a lunar eclipse LIVE, you need to be on the night side of the Earth while the moon passes through the shadow.
For those in parts of the world where the eclipse isn’t visible — or where clouds foil the view — there will be several free webcasts showing live views of the eclipse online. 

Weather permitting, the Griffith Observatory in Los Angeles plans to stream live views of the Super Flower Blood Moon on Wednesday (May 26) beginning at 4:45 a.m. EDT (0845 GMT) — just two minutes before the penumbral phase of the lunar eclipse begins. The broadcast will end at 9 a.m. EDT (1300 GMT), shortly after the last partial phase of the eclipse has ended. 

One can watch the Griffith Observatory’s webcast live in the window above, courtesy of the observatory, or tune in via YouTube. 

The Lowell Observatory — where the dwarf planet Pluto was famously discovered — will also broadcast live views of the eclipse from multiple telescopes at its facility in Flagstaff, Arizona.

Starting at 5:30 a.m. EDT (0930 GMT), “Lowell educators will show you LIVE views of the eclipse through our 14” Plane wave telescope and wide-view portable Vixen telescopes,” the observatory said in a statement. “Educators will also discuss the science of eclipses, the best ways to view them, Lowell’s history with the Moon, and much more! “This event ends at 7:25 a.m. EDT (1125 GMT). You can watch it LIVE in the window above, courtesy of Lowell Observatory, or on YouTube.