This weekend, the full “Flower Moon” will pass through part of Earth’s shadow and be eclipsed for a few hours. The event which will be visible to more than 6.6 billion people, according to Timeanddate.com (opens in a new tab).
During this weekend’s brief lineup, viewers in the Middle East, Africa, Asia, Australia, New Zealand and Antarctica, as well as the Atlantic, Indian and Pacific Oceans will be able to see the moon eclipse. Parts of Europe (but not the UK) will also see part of the eclipse during moonrise on May 5.
This eclipse will occur between 3:14 p.m. UTC and 7:31 p.m. UTC on May 5, with a maximum eclipse at 5:22 p.m. UTC. The event will last a total of 4 hours and 18 minutes.
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Meanwhile, the Full Flower Moon – named after the flowers that bloom throughout the Northern Hemisphere at this time of year – will appear bright and full all over the world on Thursday, Friday and Saturday (May 5-7). ).
The eclipse will occur because the Earth will lie precisely between the sun and the moon, and is part of the same alignment of the moon’s orbit that caused the recent total solar eclipse.
The result on Friday and Saturday will be a penumbral lunar eclipse, which is when Earth’s outer shadow – its penumbra – falls on the moon, causing a subtle change in its light. While a full moon high in the sky is usually too bright to watch for more than a few seconds, the full moon during this eclipse will be very easy to watch without any glare. Observers may notice shading on the lunar surface, according to EarthSky (opens in a new tab).
However, the moon will narrowly miss moving into Earth’s shadow — its darker inner shadow — making it the deepest penumbral eclipse until September 29, 2042, according to Timeanddate.com.
When the moon moves through Earth’s dark central umbral shadow, a total lunar eclipse occurs. The next total lunar eclipse – often called a “blood moon” – won’t occur until March 13 or March 14, 2025.