All with their eyes up to the sky, the most beautiful astronomical event of May (and beyond) just missing: Monday May 16 show backtotal lunar eclipse In the sky of Italy. The most recent was on January 21, 2019, but on that occasion, rain and clouds made the monitoring process very complicated.
Lunar eclipse: details
In detail, our satellite will be close to the minimum distance from Earth (perihelion), a condition commonly referred to as “superluna”: the star will appear slightly larger than average. A total lunar eclipse can be observed with the naked eye, although binoculars or a telescope can make the view more interesting.
For an eclipse, a full moon is not enough, you need a perfect alignment between the sun, the earth and the satellite. The Moon begins to enter Earth’s twilight cone from the west, and thus appears slightly dim of light at the edge of the eastern side of its disk. Next, the satellite sinks into the shadow cone, producing a noticeable dimming, initially on the fringes, then more and more broadly the lunar disk. When the moon is completely inside the tangent cone, the total phase will begin. This will reach its maximum extent, after which the eclipse will show mirror-like phases to the initial ones, ending when the moon is completely out of its semi-shadow cone, and returns to full sunlight.
The moon will be full at 06:14, while it will be at its lowest distance from Earth on May 17, at 17:23. The total lunar eclipse will occur on May 16 in the second part of Italian night, past dawn: the first will be in 2022.
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