The longest lunar eclipse of the century is coming Friday

Planetarium to make arrangements for viewing Blood Moon

Longest lunar eclipse of the century set to arrive Friday

If you're in eastern Africa, central Asia or the Middle East, you're in an optimal geographical position to view the Blood Moon. The celestial event, where the moon will line up with the Earth and the sun, will be seen across the United Kingdom and other parts of the Eastern hemisphere. Sorry, North America, you'll need to watch online instead.

As Noah Petro, from NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center, explains to, the duration of the eclipse depends on the position of the moon as it passes through the Earth's shadow. The penumbra is the partial outer shadow, and the umbra is the full, dark shadow.

Put simply, an eclipse occurs when a planet or moon passes between another planet, the moon or the sun.

In the case of a solar eclipse, the moon casts a shadow on the Earth. As it lines up with the Earth and sun, the rising full moon will darken and change from silver to rusty or blood red.

You've probably heard the term Blood Moon bandied around the past few weeks.

The century's longest lunar eclipse will occur on July 27, but it will not be visible in North America.

The Royal Astronomical Society said that Mars and the moon will appear low in the sky for everyone in the United Kingdom, so a location with an unobstructed southeastern horizon will afford the best view. The moon will be in flawless alignment with the sun and Earth on Friday, with the moon on the opposite side of the Earth from the sun.

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Mars is very bright and red throughout July and August this year, but the eclipse night will be a very special night.

And if you can't catch this blood moon, don't worry.

On Saturday morning, the moon will be at apogee - the furthest point in its orbit from the Earth. The partial eclipse will start again around 3:49 am.

However, not all of Australia will be able to see the entire eclipse. Even better news, Australians are expected to be among those with the best view of the slow-moving astronomy event.

NASA tells us the moon's red glow is caused by Earth completely blocking the sunlight that normally reflects off its surface.

- We were lucky in Ukraine can be observed in nearly all phases of the total lunar Eclipse. A blood moon is safe to observe without films or telescopes and binoculars. Dark Month can be seen with the naked eye.

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