Blood Moon: Shortest lunar eclipse since 1529, next occurrence in 2155

On Saturday April 4 i.e. when celebrating the Easter weekend, the world will be witnessing the second eclipse of 2015. This time it will be a total lunar eclipse.

Unlike the solar eclipse that took place last month, which was total just for a part of the North Atlantic region, Saturday’s lunar eclipse will be visible as a total eclipse to everyone located on the Earth’s right hemisphere. The total lunar eclipse will be seen from most parts of North America and almost the entire Pacific Rim area.


For those who don’t know: the upcoming eclipse is the 3rd in a series of 4 eclipses; experts refer to the series as tetrad. The next lunar eclipse of this series will take place on September 28, 2015.

If you are familiar with the internet vernacular, you must have heard the expression Blue Moon; this term is used to refer to the Moon when it enters the Earth’s umbra and develop a bluish tinge.

In reality, during this phase, the color of the Moon might vary from a very bright orange to a dense brick color. Experts say that the color varies depending on the location of the Moon inside the shadow of the Earth i.e. depending on how deep it is located. Another factor responsible for changing the Moon’s color is the amount of intervening dust.

Currently, scientists are saying that Saturday’s eclipse will give the Moon a bright color. This is because the Moon will dip into the Earth’s umbra for a very short period of time; 4 minutes 43 seconds to be more precise.

This will be the shortest total lunar eclipse since October 17, 1529. What’s more significant is that we will not witness a short lunar eclipse like this one anytime soon. The next eclipse of this kind will take place on September 11, 2155.

People living in Australia and the Eastern parts of Asia will be seeing the total lunar eclipse of April 4 during sunset. Observers residing in the western territories of North America, on the other hand, will be viewing the entire event at sunrise. Residents of the central Pacific islands and Hawaii will be catching the eclipse around midnight.