A total lunar eclipse will take place on Wednesday. It is the first of two total lunar eclipses in 2011, the second would occur on December 10.
According to experts, it is a relatively rare central eclipse, where the Moon passes through the central line of the Earths shadow. The last lunar eclipse closer to the centre of the Earths shadow was on July 16, 2000. The next such total lunar eclipse will be on July 27, 2018. All this would happen during the total lunar eclipse that would begin at 10.54 pm on Wednesday.
A lunar eclipse occurs, when the Earth comes between the Sun and Moon in a straight line on a full Moon night. The alignment blocks sunrays, which casts a shadow over the Moon.
As the Moon moves deeper and deeper into the Earths shadow, it would change its colour from gray to an orange or deep shade of red. This is a rare event. Lucknowites have an opportunity to watch one of the longest lunar eclipses from the beginning to its end, said Shishir Sankhayan, an educator with citys Indira Gandhi Planetarium. No one should miss it, as it will be visible from naked eyes, he added. The Moon will look red in from 12:52 a.m. and 02:32 a.m.
The Moon turning red during eclipses is an important chapter of creative liberty with authors centering their stories and novels on it. The scientist fraternity is equally excited about the event but because of its simplicity. The Moon turns red because of tangential Sun rays that reach it despite the Earths shadow.
Rays of all colours start from the sun but after they come in contact with particles in the earths atmosphere, they scatter.
Red rays scatter the least because of their high wavelength and paint the white Moon red, explained Anil Yadav, in charge of Indira Gandhi Planetarium. Besides Indians, half of the people in the world will be able to see this eclipse. The ones living in eastern Africa, middle-east, central Asia and western Australia will be able to see the entire eclipse.
Those in Brazil, Uruguay and Argentina will be able to see a part of it, while no one in North America will be able to witness the phenomenon. Year 2011 has been exceptionally happening as far as occurrences of eclipses are concerned.
In all, four partial solar and two total lunar eclipses would take place in 2011, of which two partial solar eclipses have taken place on January 4 and June 1. Experts point out that maximum of seven eclipses can take place in a year.
Each one of us is born with a father planet. The event could have a positive and negative impact on the lives of those born with Moon as their father planet. But, this is a matter of belief, said DK Shukla, a city-based astrologer.
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