How the lunar eclipse looked above south-east Queensland

BLOOD MOON

The lunar event will be seen across Ireland and the UK and other parts of the Eastern hemisphere

The longest blood moon eclipse in this century will take place on July 27.

Those on social media were at least able to see the amusing side, putting the internet's bank of gifs to good use to explain their frustration.

According to NASA, the next lunar eclipse that is this long will occur in 2123. It is possible that meteorites containing simple organisms like cyanobacteria could have been blasted off the surface of the Earth and landed on the Moon.

Our red moon will have some company Friday, when Mars is the closest to Earth that it's been in 15 years.

During totality, which begins at around 3:30 p.m. EDT (19:30 UTC), the moon will be immersed in Earth's shadow and will be "illuminated by red light filtered by the [Earth's] atmosphere", Diego said.

Andrew Fabian, professor of astronomy at Cambridge University, explained that light from the sun goes through the earth's atmosphere on its way to the moon. The sky show will not be visible from North America, but there's still a way to catch all the action surrounding the "blood moon" online.

The period of complete eclipse - known as "totality" when the moon appears darkest and takes on a red hue lasted from 8.30pm until 10.13pm.

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Due to this reddish colour, a totally eclipsed Moon is sometimes called a blood moon.

"This eclipse is special because just by chance it happens that the moon will cross the shadow of the Earth nearly along its diameter, which makes the eclipse a few minutes longer than usual", Francisco Diego, an astronomer at University College London in the United Kingdom, told NBC News.

A total lunar eclipse happens when Earth takes position in a straight line between the moon and sun, blotting out the direct sunlight that normally makes our satellite glow whitish-yellow.

Mars is reaching its opposition, when it's in alignment on the opposite side of the Earth and the sun. At that time, the planet will be just 35.8 million miles away, which means it will be making its closest approach since 2003.

The warning area extends from Cambridge and Peterborough up to the Scottish Borders, Mr Madge said, adding that Wales, the south and west of England and most of Northern Ireland should have clear skies.

The same day, Mars will be at its brightest as it travels close to earth, so observers may be able to see what looks like an orange-red star which is in fact the so-called red planet. Experts estimate that Mars' brightness will persist for several weeks.

At the same time, Mars hovered near the moon in the night sky, easily visible to the naked eye.

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