It’s not just any special lunar event but one whose occurrence is highly unlikely for the next century. The Super Blue Blood Moon will appear on the night of January 31. It is a special event where the Supermoon, Blue Moon, and Red or Blood Moon Are occurring on the same night. To understand this phenomenon better let’s get a quick recap of what each of the lunar events is.
All of us know that the moon’s orbit around the earth is elliptical. Now the point of the orbit closest to earth is called perigee and the point furthest is called apogee. Supermoons happen when the moon’s perigee coincides with a full moon, thereby making it appear larger than usual. A Supermoon roughly appears to be 12%-14% larger than an average full moon and about 30% brighter due to its proximity to the earth.
When 2 full moons happen in the same calendar month, then the second full moon is called a Blue Moon. Blue Moons are not very uncommon, in fact, they occur once in every 2 or 3 years. There is nothing significant in terms of appearance when you talk about the Blue Moon. It looks pale grey and white like any other moon you see. But in the literal sense, a moon can appear bluish like it did in 1988 when a volcanic eruption caused the air to act as a filter thereby making the moon to appear bluish.
Red or Blood Moon
The sun is the source of light for the moon. A Red Moon or Blood Moon occurs when the earth comes in between the sun and the earth. That is the moon is directly in the path of the earth’s shadow. This is also commonly known as the lunar eclipse. Unlike the Blue Moon, the Red Moon reflects the name in its appearance as well. The reddish colour is a result of the scattering of light also called Rayleigh Scattering. Where the sunlight refracts while passing through the earth’s surface in a way that the red light scatters less than the other lights on the spectrum.
31 January 2018
So on the 31st the extremely unusual occurrence of all the above 3 lunar events. The sight will be as rare as it can be. It’s only once in a lifetime that you can observe a moon that’s bigger, brighter and with a tinge of red in colour. Mark the date because you will not want to miss the Super Blue Blood Moon!