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Wednesday, August 02, 2017

 

Partial Lunar Eclipse (Morning, Tuesday August 8, 2017)

Morning sky on Tuesday, August 8 looking west as seen from Adelaide at 03:51 ACST. Similar views will be seen elsewhere in Australia at the equivalent local time. (click to embiggen). Note the darkening of the edge of the Moon. Earth's shadow is formed from two overlapping cone-shaped sections. The outer or penumbral shadow is where the Earth blocks part but not all of the Sun's light from reaching the Moon, the Umbra is where all of the light is blocked. This year the Moon brushes the edge of the Umrba. Click to embiggen

On the morning of Tuesday 8 August there is a partial eclipse of the Moon, where the Moon only partially enters the inner, darkest segment of the shadow cast by Earth. This is the first Umbral eclipse since 2015.

Unfortunately, this all occurs in the early morning, so you will need to get up in the early hours to see it. However, to eclipse aficionados seeing a dark sliver carver from the Moons silver glow is worth it.

All of Australia will see this partial eclipse from start to finish. The eclipse is quite shallow, so only a small fraction of the Moons southern edge is in darkness (although the southern half of the moon will be dimmer due to the penumbral shadow).

See the table below for timings for major cities (all times are am on the morning of the 17th). Twilight is Astronomical twilight, an hour and a half before sunrise, when the sky is still fully dark. See here for a map and contact timings in UT for sites outside Australia. Asia and Africa have the best views. My guide to imaging eclipses may be helpful.

CityEclipse startMid eclipseEnd eclipse Twilight
Adelaide (ACST)2:523:514:495:38
Brisbane (AEST)3:224:215:195:07
Canberra (AEST)3:224:215:195:28
Darwin (ACST)2:523:515:506:26
Hobart (AEST)3:224:215:195:41
Melbourne (AEST)3:224:215:195:57
Perth (AWST)1:222:213:194:56
Sydney (AEST)3:224:215:195:19

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Looks like a 'limb grazer' Ian, but I'll have a look anyways :)
 
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