Total Lunar Eclipse in April
Susie77, 12:32 PM GMT on March 31, 2014
Total lunar eclipse for the Americas on night of April 14-15
Tonight for April 14, 2014
The very bright red planet Mars shines close to the full moon on the night of the April 14-15 eclipse.Above photo is a 2004 lunar eclipse by Fred Espenak
Oftentimes, the full moon appears coppery red during a total lunar
eclipse because the dispersed light from all the Earth’s sunrises and
sunsets falls on the face of the moon. Thus the term Blood Moon
can be and is applied to any and all total lunar eclipses. However,
this term seems to have special significance in Christian culture in
2014, as a remarkable series of total lunar eclipses – a tetrad
– begins. The first one is April 14 or 15 (depending on your time
zone). On that night, the brilliant “star” near the April full moon is
the red planet Mars. They’ll be near each other as the eclipse takes
place, and indeed, as seen from around the world, all night long. North
America is in a good place to see this eclipse, by the way, and all
four eclipses of the lunar tetrad. Follow the links below to learn more
about the April 14-15, 2014 total lunar eclipse:Details on the total lunar eclipse on April 14-15.Who will see the partial lunar eclipse on April 14-15?Eclipse times in Universal TimeEclipse times for North American time zonesEclipse calculators give eclipse times for your time zoneWhat causes a lunar eclipse?What is a Blood Moon?How to photograph a lunar eclipse by eclipse master Fred Espenak
Track the moon every night throughout the year using EarthSky’s lunar calendar!
Worldwide map of April 14-15, 2014, total lunar eclipse
| Worldwide map of the April 14-15, 2014, total lunar eclipse. Map courtesy NASA Eclipse Web Site
a lunar eclipse, the moon always passes through Earth’s very light
penumbral shadow before and after its journey through Earth’s dark
umbral shadow.Details on the total lunar eclipse of April 14-15.
The April 2014 full moon passes directly through Earth’s dark (umbral)
shadow. The total part of the April 14-15 eclipse lasts nearly 1.3
hours. A partial umbral eclipse precedes totality by over an hour, and
follows totality by over an hour, so the moon takes a little more than
3.5 hours to completely sweep through the Earth’s dark shadow on the
night of April 14-15.
North and South America, plus islands of the Pacific (such as Hawaii)
are in the best position worldwide to watch the total eclipse of the
moon on the night of April 14-15. Elsewhere around the world, New
Zealand can watch the total eclipse shortly after sunset on April 15,
and the eastern part of Australia can see the total eclipse, at least in
part, starting at sunset on April 15.
A very light penumbral eclipse comes before and after the dark
(umbral) stage of the lunar eclipse. But this sort of eclipse is so
faint that many people won’t even notice it. The penumbral eclipse would
be more fun to watch from the moon, where it would be seen as a partial
eclipse of the sun.Who will see the partial lunar eclipse of April 14-15?
A partial lunar eclipse may be visible in the haze of morning dawn
from the extreme western portion of Africa, before sunrise on April 15. A
partial lunar eclipse can also be observed from Japan, far-eastern
Russia, eastern Indonesia and central Australia, starting at sunset on
On April 14-15, 2014, the moon passes through the Earth’s shadow from west to east. The yellow line represents the ecliptic
Earth’s orbital plane projected onto the dome of sky. The moon crosses
the ecliptic at the moon’s ascending node, going from south to north.Eclipse times in Universal Time
Partial umbral eclipse begins: 5:58 Universal Time (UT)
Total eclipse begins: 7:07 UT
Greatest eclipse: 7:46 UT
Total eclipse ends: 8:25 UT
Partial umbral eclipse ends: 9:33 UTHow do I translate Universal Time to my time?Eclipse times for North American time zones.
Eastern Daylight Time (April 15, 2014)
Partial umbral eclipse begins: 1:58 a.m. EDT on April 15
Total eclipse begins: 3:07 a.m. EDT
Greatest eclipse: 3:46 a.m. EDT
Total eclipse ends: 4:25 a.m. EDT
Partial eclipse ends: 5:33 a.m. EDT
Central Daylight Time (April 15, 2014)
Partial umbral eclipse begins: 12:58 a.m. CDT on April 15
Total eclipse begins: 2:07 a.m. CDT
Greatest eclipse: 2:46 a.m. CDT
Total eclipse ends: 3:25 a.m. CDT
Partial eclipse ends: 4:33 a.m. CDT
Mountain Daylight Time (April 14-15, 2014)
Partial umbral eclipse begins: 11:58 p.m. MDT on April 14
Total eclipse begins: 1:07 a.m. MDT on April 15
Greatest eclipse: 1:46 a.m. EDT
Total eclipse ends: 2:25 a.m. EDT
Partial eclipse ends: 3:33 a.m. EDT
Pacific Daylight Time (April 14-15, 2014)
Partial umbral eclipse begins: 10:58 p.m. PDT on April 14
Total eclipse begins: 12:07 a.m. PDT on April 15
Greatest eclipse: 12:46 a.m. PDT
Total eclipse ends: 1:25 a.m. PDT
Partial eclipse ends: 2:33 a.m. PDT
Alaskan Daylight Time (April 14-15, 2014)
Partial umbral eclipse begins: 9:58 p.m. ADT on April 14
Total eclipse begins: 11:07 p.m. ADT on April 14
Greatest eclipse: 11:46 p.m. ADT on April 14
Total eclipse ends: 12:25 a.m. ADT on April 15
Partial eclipse ends: 1:33 a.m. ADT on April 15
Hawaii-Aleutian Standard Time (April 14, 2014)
Partial umbral eclipse begins: 7:58 p.m. HAST on April 14
Total eclipse begins: 9:07 p.m. HAST on April 14
Greatest eclipse: 9:46 p.m. HAST on April 14
Total eclipse ends: 10:25 p.m. HAST on April 14
Partial eclipse ends: 11:33 p.m. HAST on April 14Eclipse calculators give times of the April 14-15 lunar eclipse in your time zone
You have to be on the nighttime side of Earth while the lunar eclipse
is taking place to witness this great natural phenomenon. Of course,
people around the globe want to know whether the eclipse is visible from
their part of the world and at what time. Check out the two links
below, to find out if the eclipse is visible from your neck of the
woods. If so, these handy sites provide you with the local times of the
partial and total lunar eclipse (so no conversion is necessary):Lunar eclipse computer courtesy of the US Naval ObservatoryEclipse calculator courtesy of TimeandDate
The yellow circle shows the sun’s apparent yearly path (the ecliptic)
in front of the constellations of the Zodiac
The gray circle displays the monthly path of the moon in front of the
zodiacal constellations. If a new moon or full moon aligns closely with
one of the moon’s nodes, then an eclipse is in the works.What causes a lunar eclipse?
lunar eclipse can only happen at full moon. Only then is it possible
for the moon to be directly opposite the sun in our sky, and to pass
into the Earth’s dark umbral shadow. Most of the time, however, the full
moon eludes the Earth’s shadow by swinging to the north of it, or south
of it. For instance, the March 2014 full moon swung south
of the Earth’s shadow. Next month – in May 2014 – the full moon will swing north
of the Earth’s shadow.
The moon’s orbital plane is actually inclined at 5o to the ecliptic
– Earth’s orbital plane. However, the moon’s orbit intersects the
ecliptic at two points called nodes. It’s an ascending node where it
crosses the Earth’s orbital plane going from south to north, and a
descending node where it crosses the Earth’s orbital plane, going from
north to south.
In short, a lunar eclipse happens when the full moon closely
coincides with one of its nodes, and a solar eclipse happens when a new
moon does likewise.
Bottom line: The eclipse of April 14-15, 2014 is the first in a
series of four eclipses – a lunar tetrad – all of which will be visible
from North America. Many will call it a Blood Moon. The bright reddish
“star” near the moon on that night is the planet Mars. Details of the
eclipse, and eclipse times, here.
Susie77, 4:01 PM GMT on March 03, 2014
By Bruce McClure and Deborah Byrd in
Tonight | Astronomy Essentials | Space on Feb 28, 2014
March 2014 guide to the five visible planets
Moon blocks Venus Feb. 26 by Ravindra Aradhya
In March 2014, Jupiter pops out at nightfall. Mars and
Saturn are rising earlier. Venus remains a brilliant morning object.
Mercury is also up before dawn.
Moon low in west, Jupiter high in south at dusk March 2 Read more
Jupiter poised in front of stars of Gemini on March 6. This is when
Jupiter ends its retrograde, or westward, motion in front of the stars. Read more
Moon and Jupiter in front of Winter Circle on March 8 Read moreJupiter
is the only visible planet as darkness falls
each evening, all through March 2014. Watch for the moon to pair up
with Jupiter on March 8
, March 9
and March 10
is still very prominent in the predawn and
dawn sky throughout March. In fact, dazzling Venus will remain the most
brilliant starlike object in the morning sky until late October 2014,
when it will shift over into the evening sky. Venus reaches its greatest western elongation
– greatest angular distance from the sun on the sky’s dome – on March 22
. The lovely waning moon swings close to Venus on March 26
, March 27
and March 28
is the planet to watch in March 2014. It
shines in front of the constellation Virgo the Maiden, rising in the
east around 10:30 p.m. local Daylight Time in early March, and then at
the month’s end, coming up around 8 p.m. local Daylight Time. Mars is
near Spica, Virgo’s brightest star, and the proximity of the two –
reddish Mars and blue-white Spica – should help you notice it. Mars
reaches its highest point for the night about 4 a.m. local Daylight Time
in early March and 2 a.m. local Daylight Time in late march. Watch for
Mars. Its cycle of visibility in our sky is about two years long – two
years between good apparitions of the Red Planet – and the time is now.
Earth will pass between Mars and the sun in early April, and between
now and then this planet will be rising earlier and earlier in our
evening sky, growing brighter and more noticeable all the while.Saturn
is found in front of the constellation Libra
the Scales. It rises in the east-southeast around 1 a.m. local Daylight
Saving Time in early March, and roughly 11 p.m. local Daylight Time by
the end of the month. Saturn climbs to its highest point in the sky
shortly before morning dawn. Mercury
has a long apparition in the March 2014 sky.
It’s in the morning sky all month long, but it’s easier to view from
the Southern Hemisphere. Mercury reaches its greatest western elongation
– greatest angular distance from the sun on our sky’s dome – on March 14
Follow the links below to learn more about planets and special sky events in March 2014.Moon low in west, Jupiter high in south at dusk March 2Catch the young moon and the planet Jupiter again on March 3Planet Jupiter poised in front of the stars of Gemini on March 6Moon, Jupiter in front of Winter Circle on March 8Moon, Jupiter come out as soon as darkness falls March 9What do we mean by visible planet?Easily locate stars and constellations during any day and time with EarthSky’s Planisphere.Don’t miss anything! Subscribe to EarthSky News by emailEvening planets in March 2014Jupiter from dusk until the wee hours after midnightMars rises at mid-to-late eveningMorning planets in March 2014Venus before sunrise, all monthJupiter from dusk until wee hours after midnightMars mid-to-late evening to dawnSaturn midnight until dawnMercury before sunrise all month long
Jupiter and one of its moons, Io, on February 28, 2014 via Earthsky Facebook
friend Derek Brookes. Thank you, Derek!
March 2014, look for the constellation Orion’s two brightest stars,
Rigel and Betelgeuse, to line up with the dazzling planet Jupiter.Jupiter most of the night, dusk till wee hours after midnight
Jupiter is still the planet to watch in March 2014. It’s the
brightest celestial object to light up the evening sky in March 2014,
with the exception of the moon. No star outshines Jupiter.
Earth swung between the sun and Jupiter on January 5, 2014
This is Jupiter’s yearly opposition – when it’s opposite the sun –
rising in the east as the sun is setting in the west, and setting in the
west as the sun is rising in the east. Jupiter stays out well past
midnight throughout March, setting in the west at roughly the same time
that Mars reaches its highest point for the night, a few hours before
dawn’s first light.
Thus, in March 2014, Jupiter is out first thing at evening dusk.
Look for it, come to know it, and keep your eye on Jupiter as this
brilliant world shines from dusk until the wee morning hours all month
Still not sure which one is Jupiter? Remember it’s the brightest
star-like object in the sky for most of the night, throughout March. Or
… let the moon guide you to the giant planet Jupiter on March 8
, March 9
and March 10
By the way, Jupiter is still floating by two bright stars on the
sky’s dome. These stars are noticeable for being both bright and close
together: Castor and Pollux in the constellation Gemini.
At northerly latitudes, use the Big Dipper to find the star Spica and the planet Mars.Mars: mid-to-late evening till dawn.
Mars rises in the east around 11 p.m. local daylight-saving time in
early March (late night, no matter where you are on the globe). By the
month’s end, it’ll be coming up even earlier – sooner and sooner each
evening. Mars transits
– reaches its high point – around 4:00
a.m. local time in early March and around 2:00 a.m. at the month’s end.
You’ll see a bright star near Mars. That star is Spica in the
Moreover, Mars brightens all the while. That’s because Earth is now
coming up behind Mars in the race of the planets around the sun, and the
distance between our two worlds is decreasing. We’ll pass between Mars
and the sun in early April 2014. At that time, Mars will shine at its
brightest best for the year, and moreover, Mars will light up Earth’s
night sky all night long!
Keep in mind that Jupiter shines many times more brilliantly than
Mars does. In the wee hours before dawn, as Jupiter sits low in the
west, look for Mars to shine at or near its highest point in the sky.
Use the moon to find Mars and Spica on the nights of March 17-18
and March 18-19
And when there is no moon to guide you, try using the Big Dipper to arc
to Arcturus, spike Spica – and in 2014, to locate Mars.
is bright. Even light pollution can’t diminish the view of it. Photo
from our friend Christy Sanchez, in Denver, on February 26, 2014.
Thanks, Christy.Venus in the predawn/dawn sky all month.
Venus beams in the eastern predawn and dawn sky throughout March. At
mid-northern latitudes, it rises about two and one-half hours before
sunrise in early March and about two hours before sunup by the month’s
end. Venus will continue to shine as the “morning star” until late
September or early October 2014.
Use the slender waning crescent moon
to help you find Venus in the morning sky on March 26
, March 27
and March 28
You need a telescope to observe the phases of Venus. Whenever you see
Venus in the morning sky, it is always moving away from Earth and its
phase is continually waxing (getting broader). This month, Venus’ disk
starts out about 37% illuminated in sunshine and ends the month around
54% illuminated. Venus’ illuminated portion covered the greatest square
area of sky on February 15, when its disk is 26% illuminated. Believe it
or not, Venus shines at or near its brightest in the morning (or
evening) sky when its disk is about one-quarter lit up in sunshine.
Nonetheless, Venus will remain the brightest star-like object in the
morning sky for months to come!
as captured by the Cassini spacecraft in early February 2014. Cassini
has been in orbit around Saturn since 2004. Many awesome images!Saturn midnight till dawn.
mid-northern latitudes, Saturn rises around midnight in early March and
mid-evening by late March. This golden-colored world shines in front of
the constellation Libra the Scales.
Let the waning moon help guide you to Saturn on the mornings of March 20
and March 21
, or around the time of the March equinox.
Saturn is rising earlier day by day, and will easily appear in the
evening sky before your bedtime in April 2014. Saturn will be out all
night long and at its best in May 2014.
Binoculars won’t reveal Saturn’s gorgeous rings, but a small
telescope will. This month, Saturn climbs fairly high in the predawn sky
and should be a fine telescopic object. Saturn’s rings are inclined by
more than 22o from edge-on in March 2014, showing us their
north face. Several years from now, the rings will open most widely in
October 2017, displaying a maximum inclination of 27o. As
with so much in space (and on Earth), the appearance of Saturn’s rings
from Earth is cyclical. In the year 2025, the rings will appear edge-on
as seen from Earth. After that, we’ll begin to see the south side of
Saturn’s rings, to increase to a maximum inclination of 27o by May 2032.
Mercury and moon on February 27, 2014, by GregDiesel Landscape Photography
. Greg managed to catch Mercury just at the beginning of its long March 2014 apparition in the predawn sky.
moon, Venus and Mercury as seen from South Africa on March 28, 2014.
Mercury will be much easier to spot before sunrise in the Southern
Mercury passed out of the evening sky and into
the morning sky on February 15. Mercury, the innermost planet of the
solar system, reaches its greatest western (morning elongation from its
sun on March 14, at a whopping 28o west of the sun. Whereas
this will be a super-great apparition of Mercury in the morning sky for
the Southern Hemisphere, it’ll be a poor one for the Northern
Hemisphere. Try using the slender waning crescent moon to locate Mercury
below Venus in the east before sunrise on March 28
and March 29
.What do we mean by visible planet?
By visible planet, we mean any solar system planet that is easily
visible without an optical aid and that has been watched by our
ancestors since time immemorial. In their outward order from the sun,
the five visible planets are Mercury, Venus, Mars, Jupiter and Saturn.
These planets are visible in our sky because their disks reflect
sunlight, and these relatively nearby worlds tend to shine with a
steadier light than the distant, twinkling stars. They tend to be
bright! You can spot them, and come to know them as faithful friends,
if you try.Bottom line
: In March 2014, only one of the five
visible planets – Jupiter – will be visible first thing at nightfall.
However, the planets Mars and Saturn are rising earlier in the evening
sky daily. Mars will shine all night long in April 2014 whereas Saturn
will shine all night long in May 2014. If you live in the Southern
Hemisphere, look for Mercury to put on its finest morning appearance for
the year all month long!Need a sky almanac? EarthSky recommends …Easily locate stars and constellations during any day and time with EarthSky’s Planisphere.Don’t miss anything! Subscribe to EarthSky News by email
was rivaling the streetlights on December 29, 2013, when Mohamed
Laaifat Photographies captured this photo in Normandy, France. Visit his page on Facebook.
only a modest backyard telescope, you can easily see Jupiter’s four
largest moons. Here they are through a 10″ (25 cm) Meade LX200
telescope. Image credit: Jan Sandberg
Skywatcher, moon, planet (looks like Venus) from Predrag Agatonovic.
Venus on Dec. 26 by Danny Crocker-Jensen
the moonless evening of December 3, 2013, Chris Georgia took this
gorgeous photo of the constellation Orion (above his head and left of
the light pole), the planet Jupiter (brightest star-like object at
left), and the Gemini stars to upper left of Jupiter: Castor (at top)
and Pollux (at bottom). Thank you so much, Chris! View larger
are called star trails. It’s a long-exposure photo, which shows you
how Earth is turning under the stars. The brightest object here is
Jupiter, which is the second-brightest planet, after Venus. This
awesome photo by EarthSky Facebook friend Mohamed Laaifat in Normandy,
France. Thank you, Mohamed.View larger.
| Venus shining above the rock of Asseu, Gulf of Riva Trigoso, Sestri
Levante, Ligurian Sea, Genoa, Italy, November 29, 2013, via Maranatha.it Photography.
very difficult to pick out Mercury in the evening during the autumn
months, but it can be done. This photo of Mercury is from an evening
apparition of Mercury last autumn: October 22, 2012. Notice how deeply
buried the planet is in twilight. Photo by EarthSky Facebook
friend Gary P. Caton. Thank you, Gary!View larger.
| Mars and moon as seen from Hong Kong on October 2, 2013 via EarthSky Facebook friend Matthew Chin. Thank you, Matthew!View larger.
| EarthSky Facebook
friend Peter Wong in Adelaide, Australia captured this image of planets
and the star Spica in the west after sunset on September 26, 2013.
Thank you, Peter!View larger.
| Here are the moon and Venus on September 7, 2013 as captured by
EarthSky Facebook friend Ken Christison in North Carolina. Thank you,
| Mercury, Venus and Jupiter seen when evening fell in Hong Kong earlier today – June 1, 2013 – by EarthSky Facebook
friend Matthew Chin. Awesome shot, Matthew!View larger.
| From left to right, Jupiter, Venus and Mercury as seen May 24, 2013. EarthSky Facebook
friend Duke Marsh captured this photo in Clarksville, Indiana.View larger.
| The two brightest objects in this photo – and in your evening sky on
May 12, 2013 – appeared to be the waxing crescent moon and Jupiter. In
reality, an even brighter planet – Venus – was also up, but buried in
bright twilight. Photo by EarthSky Facebook friend Daniel McVey.
Saturn at the April 28, 2013 opposition (day Earth went between sun and
Saturn) from EarthSky Facebook friend D.R. Keck Photography.Easily locate stars and constellations during any day and time with EarthSky’s Planisphere.Don’t miss anything! Subscribe to EarthSky News by email
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