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First lunar eclipse of the year
If you are an early riser and a science geek, look to the sky early Saturday morning. Even if you aren't an early riser, you may want to set your alarm clocks. Saturday, June 26, 2010 will be the first of two lunar eclipses for 2010. This weekends eclipse will be a partial eclipse, and according to the Old Farmer's Almanac, "only visible from western and central North America.... only a penumbral eclipse will be visible from most of the East Coast." If you miss Saturday's partial lunar eclipse, a total eclipse will occur on December 21, 2010.
This lunar eclipse is being referred to as a big lunar eclipse. NASA explains, "although the eclipse is only partial, it will be magnified in size and charm by the "Moon Illusion"--a result of the eclipse occurring close to the horizon from viewing sites in the USA." It simple terms, the moon is going to appear huge.
If you an interested in waking up and viewing the lunar eclipse, the event will last approximately three hours. From NASA, "the eclipse begins at 3:17 am PDT (10:17 UT) when the Moon enters the sunset-colored shadow of Earth. By 4:38 am PDT (11:38 UT), the moment of greatest eclipse, 54% of the Moon's diameter will be covered." Here in Kansas, the eclipse will begin at 5:17 a.m. with the greatest eclipse at 6:38 a.m.
I plan to wake up and attempt to photograph the lunar eclipse (something I have never done before). Below are a couple of links to lunar eclipse photography tips (for all of the beginners like me!)
Wake up early tomorrow, grab you camera and send my your best shot. Email me (firstname.lastname@example.org) any photographs you would like to share and I will include them in this blog!