Thursday, March 26, 2015
Total Lunar Eclipse, April 4, 2015
On the evening of 4 April there there be a total eclipse of the Moon, the only Lunar eclipse seen from Australia, and the last we will see until 2018. The 4 April eclipse starts after twilight has ended in the eastern and central states. In Western Australia the partial phase occurs shortly after sunset, and totality starts when the sky is fully dark. Totality is short, only 12 minutes long for this eclipse. See timings table below.
You don't need special filters or fancy equipment to watch the lunar eclipse, you just need your eyes and somewhere comfortable to sit and watch. Binoculars or a telescope are a plus, but not necessary.
A guide to taking photos of the eclipse is here.
On the East coast, the eclipse starts after when the sky is quite dark at 8:15 pm AEST (9:15 pm AEDST) and Totality is at 9:54 pm AEST (10:54 pm AEDST), so the Moon will appear to be a burnished copper disk in a dark sky full of stars. As totality fades you will see the stars extinguish.
In the central states the eclipse starts just after Astronomical twilight at 7:45 pm ACST (8:45 pm ACDST) and Totality begins at 9:24 pm ACST (10:24 pm ACDST). Central states will also see the eclipsed Moon in all its coppery glory and the stars fade as the Moon returns.
In WA, the eclipse starts in the just after sunset, but totality will occur when the sky is fully dark. The eclipse starts at 6:15 pm AWST and Totality begins at 7:54 pm AWST.
The eclipse occurs reasonably high in the sky and is good viewing from almost anywhere. It finishes a bit late for the kids though.
New Zealand sees the eclipse late in the evening and the early morning of the following day.
See here for a map and contact timings in UT for sites outside Australia.
|City||Moonrise||Eclipse Start||Totality Start||Maximum Eclipse||Totality End||Eclipse End|
|Adelaide (ACDST)||7:00 pm||8:45 pm||10:24 pm||10:30 pm||10:36 pm||00:15 am|
|Alice Springs (ACST)||6:25 pm||7:45 pm||9:24 pm||9:33 pm||9:36 pm||10:15 pm|
|Auckland (NZT)||6:00 pm||10:15 pm||11:53 pm||12:00 am||12:06 am||01:44 am|
|Brisbane (AEST)||5:34 pm||8:15 pm||9:54 pm||10:00 pm||10:06 pm||11:45 pm|
|Cairns (AEST)||6:06 pm||8:15 pm||9:54 pm||10:00 pm||10:06 pm||11:45 pm|
|Canberra (AEDST)||7:47 pm||9:15 pm||10:54 pm||11:00 pm||11:06 pm||00:45 am|
|Christchurch (NZT)||6:06 pm||10:15 pm||11:53 pm||12:00 am||12:06 am||01:44 am|
|Darwin (ACST)||6:42 pm||7:45 pm||9:24 pm||9:33 pm||9:36 pm||10:15 pm|
|Hobart (AEDST)||6:51 pm||9:15 pm||10:54 pm||11:00 pm||11:06 pm||00:45 am|
|Melbourne (AEDST)||7:02 pm||9:15 pm||10:54 pm||11:00 pm||11:06 pm||00:45 am|
|Perth (AWST)||6:05 pm||6:15 pm||7:54 pm||8:00 pm||8:06 pm||9:45 pm|
|Rockhampton (AEST)||5:46 pm||8:15 pm||9:54 pm||10:00 pm||10:06 pm||11:45 pm|
|Sydney (AEDST)||6:39 pm||9:15 pm||10:54 pm||11:00 pm||11:06 pm||00:45 am|
|Townsville (AEST)||6:03 pm||8:15 pm||9:54 pm||10:00 pm||10:06 pm||11:45 pm|
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