We're about to see the longest lunar eclipse of the century

Greg Evans
Monday 14 May 2018 12:30
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Picture:(OZAN KOSE/AFP/Getty Images)

Last year's solar eclipse in North America was a pretty epic event.

Everyone went mad for it - including Donald Trump, who looked directly at it (don't do this), and this couple who named their newborn baby after the cosmic ballet.

But next up is not just any old lunar eclipse, but the longest of the century so far.

We saw a lunar eclipse in the UK not so long ago - a 'super blood moon' meaning that the moon turned a startling deep red colour. They occur when the sun, Earth and moon are all lined up, except this time Earth was the object blocking the sun causing the moon to change colour.

This lunar eclipse will take place on July 27 and will last for an incredible one hour and 43 minutes.

It is believed that it will be at its peak at 8:22pm UTC but you won't be able to see it everywhere on the planet. The most visible regions will reportedly be Africa, the Middle East, India, Australia, southern and eastern Europe.

Picture: Wikimedia Commons(Wikimedia Commons)

The reason this particular eclipse will last so long is that the Moon will pass almost directly through the centre of the Earth's shadow, otherwise known as the umbra.

The positioning of everything will also play a major factor. On that date, the Earth will be at it's furthest possible point from the Sun, allowing it to cast a bigger shadow

In addition, the moon will also be at its most distant point away from Earth thus creating an extra special and super long eclipse.

The previous longest eclipse occurred on July 16, 2000 and lasted for 1 hour, 46.4 minutes just a few minutes shy of the possible length for an eclipse, which is 1 hour, 47 minutes.

HT IFL Science

More: This video of the Moon's phases is mesmerising​

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