2019 will start with spectacular sight of a blood red supermoon and a total lunar eclipse. According to timeanddate.com, the total lunar eclipse will be visible from North and South America and western parts of Europe and Africa. This is the only total lunar eclipse of 2019 and there won’t be another until 2021.
The U.K.’s Royal Museums Greenwich explained “During a total lunar eclipse, the Moon usually turns a deep, dark red because it is illuminated by light that has passed through the Earth’s atmosphere and has been bent back towards the Moon by refraction,”.
“Dust in the atmosphere blocks out the higher frequency blue light waves, but the longer wavelength of red light comes through.”
Since “supermoon” will coincide with a total lunar eclipse this stargazers will see a “super blood moon.”
An interview with Time in July, NASA planetary scientist Rick Elphic revealed that it was unusual to have a total solar eclipse and supermoon fall so closely together: “It’s usually years between lunar eclipses that have supermoons in them,” he told the magazine. “We just happen to be in a seasonal cycle where last year there was one and then this year, there is one and I don’t think there will be another supermoon eclipse for a while.”
Elphic said the best way to see the eclipse is through binoculars: “Telescopes can be useful but overpowering; if you’re using a telescope, you get a close-up view of the moon, but it’s really a much more dramatic thing to see against the night sky with binoculars. That’s your best bet.”