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Thread: Penumbral Lunar Eclipse - 2020 JAN 10-11

  1. #1
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    Smile Penumbral Lunar Eclipse - 2020 JAN 10-11

    A Penumbral Lunar Eclipse will be seen by many observers with clear skies in Eurasia, Africa and Australia during the night of 2020 JAN 10-11. The Earth’s penumbra is its relatively bright fringe shadow surrounding its much darker inner shadow called the umbra. At maximum eclipse, 89% of the Moon’s diameter will be covered by the penumbra. The Moon’s nearest limb to the umbra will miss it by 12% of the Moon’s diameter. Often a penumbral lunar eclipse is hardly unnoticeable, but this time the Moon will be deep enough in the penumbra that some shadowing should be detected.

    2020 will be an unusual year in which there will be four lunar eclipses, and all of them penumbral. The next umbral eclipse will be total and occur on 2021 MAY 26.

    Below is a graphic I created for the upcoming penumbral eclipse as seen against an imaginary blue wall to make the shadow fully apparent. The predicted event timings are in Universal Time (UT), but will occur at essentially the same real time for all observers experiencing nighttime. The depicted orientation and Moon altitudes are for an observer in London.

    Photos and descriptions of the eclipse would be welcome additions to this thread.

    Lunarama2001.JPG
    For astronomical graphics and data visit
    https://www.CurtRenz.com/astronomy.html

  2. #2
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    Interestingly, just after the Moon leaves the penumbra, it will be the brightest Moon of 2020. Although it will not be the Full Moon with the largest angular diameter of 2020. That honor will go to the April Full Moon.

    Again many authors in the popular media will undoubtedly refer to the April Full Moon as a SuperMoon that's both the largest and brightest Full Moon of 2020. What they'll overlook is that the Moon's brightness is determined by not only its nearness to Earth, but also its nearness to the Sun and nearness to the Anti-Solar point in the sky. The latter factor is the reason that a Full Moon just before or after an eclipse is often an especially bright Moon. And this month nearness to the Sun (perihelion) adds another boost to the Moon's brightness.

    Those of us in North America will not be able to watch this month's lunar eclipse, but afterward as the Moon rises we will be able to observe its great brilliance.
    Last edited by Centaur; 2020-Jan-05 at 10:54 PM.
    For astronomical graphics and data visit
    https://www.CurtRenz.com/astronomy.html

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