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Total Lunar Eclipse Tonight 4/14

Don Emmert/AFP/Getty Images

I’ve always been fascinated with space. When I was a kid I wanted to grow up to be an astronomer, but that involves too much math! I also share a birthday with Nicolas Copernicus, the Polish astronomer who said the Earth goes around the Sun, and I own both a telescope and a star wheel. Like I’ve said before- I’m a nerd.

Tonight there will be a total lunar eclipse. Well, technically it will take place early Tuesday morning.

A lunar eclipse is when Earth’s shadow blocks the sun’s light, which normally reflects off the moon. A total lunar eclipse can happen only when the sun, Earth and moon are perfectly aligned.

The last lunar eclipse was Oct. 18, 2013.

If you feel like staying up for tonight’s eclipse, it begins around 2 a.m. EST and last about 3.5 hours. The moon will be fully eclipsed by the Earth’s shadow by 3 a.m.

They call tonight’s eclipse the “Blood Moon” because the moon appears to turn red during the eclipse due to dispersed light from the Earth.

Tonight’s total lunar eclipse is the first eclipse in a series of four throughout the next year called a “tetrad“. The next will be a solar eclipse on April 29 2014, but we won’t be able to see that one.

Total Lunar Eclipse Timetable

 

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