Lunar eclipse 2019 UK TONIGHT – start time for July’s partial lunar eclipse on Apollo 11 moon landing anniversary

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TODAY marks the 50th anniversary of the Apollo 11 mission launch that put man on the Moon, but we’re also expecting a stunning partial lunar eclipse.

This will obscure parts of the Moon from sight, and give stargazers another excuse to look up at our closest neighbour – where Neil Armstrong first set foot in on July 16, 1969.

A partial lunar eclipse will obscure part of the Moon tonight
PA:Press Association

Lunar eclipse 2019 – what time does the July 16 eclipse start?

The UK is almost in the perfect position to view the lunar eclipse – so Brits will have a great view.

However, it’s only a partial eclipse, so not all of the Moon will be obscured.

The lunar eclipse takes place between Tuesday July 16 and Wednesday July 17.

The “maximum eclipse” will peak at 10.31pm UK time, so that’s when you’ll want to go outside and look skyward.

A lunar eclipse takes place when the Earth lies directly between the Sun and the Moon
Nasa

The first stage of the eclipse, which is called the penumbral eclipsing, begins at 7.43pm UK time.

Then the partial eclipsing finishes up at around 11pm, followed by the last stage – another penumbral eclipsing – at 1.17am.

However, the first two stages take place below the horizon for UK stargazers.

From London, you’ll see the Full Moon rise at 9.06pm already eclipsed.

“In the UK, the eclipse will be visible from Moon rise at 9.06pm BST (16 July) to 1.17am BST (17 July),” said The Royal Observatory Greenwich.

“The best time to see the eclipse is between Moon rise at 9.06pm BST to 11.59pm BST, which is when the Moon will pass through the Earth’s umbra (full shadow).

“At maximum, we will only see a little over 60% of the surface of the Moon pass through Earth’s full shadow and appear red.

“The other part of the Moon will still appear silvery grey because sunlight is still reflecting off that part of the Moon.”

The entire event will last for around five hours across the time-zones where the eclipse is visible.

What is a lunar eclipse?

Here's what you need to know…

The Earth is constantly rotating around the Sun, and the Moon is constantly rotating around the Earth.

Sometimes all three can align, placing the Earth directly between the Sun and the Moon in a straight line.

It means the Moon is in the darkest part of Earth’s shadow – the “umbra”.

And due to convenient sizing and distancing of all three objects, no sunlight can directly reach the Moon.

However, some sunlight is refracted by Earth’s atmosphere, making the Moon appear reddish – hence the name “Blood Moon”.

Lunar eclipses typically last just a few hours, and can be viewed from anywhere on the night side of Earth.

Because they’re typically quite dim, it’s also possible to view lunar eclipses without eye protection, which isn’t the case with a solar eclipse.

There are three different types of lunar eclipse:

  • Total lunar eclipse – This is where the Moon turns deep red, receiving only light that’s passed through Earth’s atmosphere.
  • Penumbral lunar eclipse – This is when the Sun, Moon and Earth fail to form a perfect straight line, so the Moon only travels through the outer part of Earth’s shadow. This means the Moon’s surface is partly darkened.
  • Partial lunar eclipse – This is when part of the Moon travels through Earth’s full shadow, which results in part of the Moon being darkened.

Blood Moon dates – when is the next lunar eclipse?

Don’t panic if you’ve miss today’s lunar eclipse – there are plenty of Blood Moons still to come.

Here are the best Blood Moons to look out for over the next 10 years, according to Nasa:

  • Penumbral Lunar Eclipse – January 10, 2020
  • Penumbral Lunar Eclipse – June 5, 2020
  • Penumbral Lunar Eclipse –  July 5, 2020
  • Penumbral Lunar Eclipse – November 30, 2020
  • Total Lunar Eclipse – May 26, 2021
  • Partial Lunar Eclipse – November 19, 2021
  • Total Lunar Eclipse – May 16, 2022
  • Total Lunar Eclipse – November 8, 2022
  • Penumbral Lunar Eclipse – May 5, 2023
  • Partial Lunar Eclipse – October 28, 2023
  • Penumbral Lunar Eclipse – March 25, 2024
  • Partial Lunar Eclipse – September 18, 2024
  • Total Lunar Eclipse – March 14, 2025
  • Total Lunar Eclipse – September 7, 2025
  • Total Lunar Eclipse – March 3, 2026
  • Partial Lunar Eclipse – August 28, 2026
  • Penumbral Lunar Eclipse – February 20, 2027
  • Penumbral Lunar Eclipse – July 18, 2027
  • Penumbral Lunar Eclipse – August 17, 2027
  • Partial Lunar Eclipse – January 12, 2028
  • Partial Lunar Eclipse – July 6, 2028
  • Total Lunar Eclipse – December 31, 2028
  • Total Lunar Eclipse – June 26, 2029
  • Total Lunar Eclipse – December 20, 2029
  • Partial Lunar Eclipse – June 15, 2030
  • Penumbral Lunar Eclipse – December 9, 2030


We reveal everything you need to know about a lunar eclipse.

Read about the wacky Blood Moon conspiracy theories here.

And read about the space mysteries Nasa still can’t explain.

Will you be watching out for the lunar eclipse tonight? Let us know in the comments!


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