Friday, February 10, 2017

Full Snow Moon, Eclipse, & A Comet Tonight

The skies will offer a pleasant winter show tonight, Friday, Feb. 10.
On tap: a full moon (February's full moon is called the "snow moon"), a green comet and a lunar eclipse.
That's a lot to take in. Here are the details and the best times to watch:
  • The lunar surface of the snow moon will be subtly shadowed by a penumbral lunar eclipse — when Earth, the sun and moon align, EarthSky says.
  • It is the last penumbral lunar eclipse until 2020, according to AccuWeather.
  • The eclipse will be best viewed from the eastern portions of North America, after sunset tonight. For East Coasters, it is expected to begin at 5:32 p.m. Eastern Standard Time and will peak at 7:43 p.m., according to The beginning of the eclipse may not be visible for people in the Midwest and along Pacific because the moon will rise close to the horizon around the same time as the sunset, the website says.
  • Can't see from your neighborhood? You can also watch the eclipse online via US Naval Observatory.
  • You'll need to stay up extra late to catch the third celestial event — Comet 45P/Honda-Mrkos-Pajdušáková streaking by the Earth. The comet will be visible just before dawn on Saturday, according to Bring your binoculars.
  • The comet, also known as the New Year comet, will be the closest it has been to Earth since 2011, according to "Close" is a relative word: it will pass about 8 million miles from Earth this weekend.
Of course, your luck in seeing this sky show depends on the weather


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