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Tuesday, August 8, 2017

Partial Lunar Eclipse Seen Across Europe, Asia, Africa and Australia

The August full moon rises above the 5th Century BC Temple of Poseidon at Cape Sounio, south of Athens, on Monday, Aug. 7, 2017. Credit: Petros Giannakouris / AP

A partial lunar eclipse took place on August 7/8, 2017, the second of two lunar eclipses in 2017. The moon was only slightly covered by the Earth's umbral shadow at maximum eclipse. The partial eclipse lasted for one hour and 55 minutes.

Most of Asia, Africa, Europe and Australia was treated to a spectacular partial lunar eclipse. The phenomenon occurs when the moon moves through the outer part of the Earth's shadow, blocking part of the sunlight from reaching the moon and causing it to appear larger than normal.

"The interesting thing about lunar eclipse timings is that anywhere on Earth from where the moon is visible during eclipse, the time will be the same. This is in contrast to a solar eclipse in which the timings of the contacts change as the location changes on Earth," said N Rathnashree, director of the Nehru Planetarium in Delhi, India.

The moon inside the umbral shadow was a subtle red, but hard to see in contrast to the much brighter moon in the outer penumbral shadow.

The solar eclipse of August 21, 2017 occurs fourteen days later, in the same eclipse season. It will be the first total solar eclipse visible in the contiguous United States since the solar eclipse of February 26, 1979.

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