Full moon's luster to be lost during Thursday's lunar eclipse

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New Delhi, Dec 31 (ANI): The sky watchers will find lunar radiance rather dim on a full blue moon on Thursday, as the country will on look a partial lunar eclipse.

Science Popularisation Association of Communicators and Educators (SPACE) Director C B Devgun said, "A partial lunar eclipse occurs when only part of the Moon passes through the umbra, or the darkest part of Earth's shadow."

C B Devgun added, the astronomical event will also be observed in all of Asia and Europe, major parts of Africa and small portion of southwestern Australia.

Devgun further said the whole of India would be able to witness the beginning, middle and the ending of the eclipse.

Nehru Planetarium Director N Rathnasree claimed the eclipse would begin when the Moon enters penumbra at 10:47 PM and end at 02:58:11 AM.

Although the partial phase of the eclipse lasts for an hour, only 7 per cent of the diameter of the Moon is covered by the umbral shadow of the Earth, which is too negligible to be easily visible, she added.

The partial eclipse will begin at 00:22:43 AM on January 1, 2010 and end at 01:22:41 AM.

When a second full moon in a calendar month appears in the night sky, the occurrence is known as a blue moon.

There are 12 full moons most years, but every two or three years there is an extra full moon, which is called a blue moon.

"Such an eclipse of the Moon will be difficult to discern with the naked eye although an astrophotograph of the Moon might just show a hint of darkening over a very tiny region of the Moon," said N Rathnasree. (ANI)

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