A rare Blue Moon lunar eclipse will happen this month

A rare Blue Moon lunar eclipse will happen this month

A rare "Wolf Moon" last night ushered in the New Year as it lit up the skies above Britain and is set to reach its peak tonight.

Also, the 2nd full moon is extra special, as it is many times referred to as the "blue moon" being the 2nd in a month.

January 31 marks the date of a supermoon that is both blue and red.

January ends with another supermoon that's also a blue moon - the term for the second full moon within a month. Plus, both the January full moons will be super moons, appearing about 7% bigger than normal.

But for those in North America, the eclipse will be visible before sunrise on January 31, according to EarthSky. For Eastern time (EST) in the USA, residents in that region will see the eclipse begin at 6:48 AM and the moon will dip out of view shortly thereafter.

That is the point in the moon's elliptical orbit when it is closest to Earth and it makes for a pretty spectacular sight.

More news: Bills end 17-year playoff drought with win and help

The moon is at its closest point to Earth - known as the perigee - around 221,600 miles away. The moon's bright light will likely outshine numerous brightest Quadrantids.

At 6:24 p.m., the moon was full.

Another Supermoon is on the calendar for January 31, 2018.

It was a good year for the moon.

This evening, pictures show the blood-red moon rising over Tynemouth, Tyne and Wear. For example in US Mountain time (MST), the eclipse will begin at 4:48 AM, but as the full eclipse winds down, the moon will already be dipping below the horizon. It was the closest approach to Earth since 1948. It appeared about seven per cent larger and 15 per cent brighter.

"The best thing about this, with lunar eclipses it doesn't matter where you are because the moon is so bright and visible", Bonadurer said.

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