WSAV NOW Weather: Longest partial lunar eclipse in 1,000 years happening Friday morning

WSAV NOW Weather

SAVANNAH, Ga. (WSAV) — We are in for a treat early Friday morning because the Micro Beaver Blood Moon turns red as a partial *almost full* lunar eclipse occurs. Not only will the moon be covered by 99% of Earth’s shadow (like I said almost full lunar eclipse), it will be the longest partial eclipse in a stretch of 1,000 years.

The next time a partial eclipse will last this long will be on Feb. 8, 2669 — 648 years from now! You won’t want to miss it!


Let’s start off by breaking down the name of Micro Beaver Full Moon.

MICRO: Moons are given the name micro when we have a full moon during the moon’s apogee – the farthest point away from Earth in its orbit.

BEAVER: November’s full moon name comes from beavers getting ready to take shelter for winter and hunters setting up beaver traps to get warm fur for the winter.

BLOOD: This comes from the shade of red the moon will turn during a lunar eclipse. Once the earth moves in front of the sun, the moon will turn a dark, dusty red color. Even with this partial (99%) lunar eclipse, expect the moon to get a shade of red.

MOON: It’s the moon.

What is a lunar eclipse?

A lunar eclipse occurs when the Earth comes in between the sun and the moon. The moon travels behind Earth’s shadow, blocking out the sunlight from the moon. While the moon passes behind Earth all the time, it has to be in a certain position that is lined up with its orbital tilt for this to happen; otherwise, this would happen more frequently.

As Earth begins to cast a shadow on the moon, the moon begins to darken. Once the shadow completely covers the moon, the moon will appear a deep red color. This red glow comes from the scattering effect of sunlight through the earth’s atmosphere and the only remaining sunlight comes from the outer edges of Earth. However, if you were on the moon, you would see a golden glow around Earth.

Longest Partial Eclipse in a stretch of 1000 years

This eclipse will last one hour longer than the eclipse that occurred in May due to the position of the moon in its orbit. As this eclipse is occurring, the moon will be about 40 hours away from reaching its apogee. The farther away the moon is, the slower it takes to travel through Earth’s shadow.

The eclipse this Friday lasts for 6 hours and 2-5 minutes (depending on where you are located). The last time an eclipse lasting this long occurred was in Feb. 18, 1440, and the next one won’t occur until 2669. That is an over 1000 year span from the last longest eclipse to the next one.

What the Coastal Empire & Lowcountry will see

For those of us in the Coastal Empire and Lowcountry, we have an amazing opportunity Friday morning to see the entire eclipse from start to finish. The worst part will be getting up very early and losing some sleep!

Even with this prime viewing opportunity, you will still want to find an unobstructed view looking towards the west. The moon will be traveling from the southwest all the way to the northwest. The moon will start off high in the sky and slowly travel closer to the horizon by the time the eclipse is over.

Lunar Eclipse Begins1:02 amYes, Southwest
High Altitude
Partial Eclipse Begins2:18 amYes, West-Southwest
High Altitude
Maximum Partial Lunar Eclipse Begins
99% of Moon Covered by Shadow
4:02 amYes, West
Middle of Sky
Partial Lunar Eclipse Ends5:47 amYes, West-Northwest
Low in Sky
Lunar Eclipse Officially Ends7:04 amYes, Northwest
Along Horizon
Moon Set7:07 amNo, Below Horizon
The total length of the lunar eclipse is 6 hours, 2 minutes.

Sunrise Friday morning is at 6:57 am.

Don’t be too sad if you miss it…
We have more opportunities within the next few years

The lunar eclipse tomorrow will be the first out of many eclipses (both lunar and solar) we get to enjoy through 2024. While this one is the longest through the next 600 years, we get to enjoy two total and completely viewable lunar eclipses next year!

Partial Lunar EclipseNovember 18-19, 2021VIEWABLE HERE!!
-99% of moon will be Earth’s Shadow
-Moon will have red glow
Total Solar EclipseDecember 4, 2021Total – Antarctica
Not Viewable here
Total Lunar EclipseMay 15-16, 2022VIEWABLE HERE!!
-100% of moon will be Earth’s Shadow
-Moon will have red glow
Total Lunar EclipseNovember 8, 2022VIEWABLE HERE!!
-Total Eclipse Visible
Annual Solar EclipseOctober 14, 2023Total – Southwest United States
Partial – Southeast United States
-Moon covers 50% of Sun
Total Solar EclipseApril 8, 2024Total – Texas up to Northeast
Partial – Georgia & South Carolina
-Moon covers 60-70% of Sun

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