Space lovers, mark your calendars for Sunday, September 27.
On that night, skywatchers in most areas of the world will enjoy a special treat: the first “supermoon” eclipse since 1982 — and the last we’ll see until 2033.
NASA will bring you live coverage of the event through its Ustream channel beginning at 8 pm EDT.
What makes this eclipse “super” is that it’s occurring at the stage in the moon’s orbit where it’s closest to Earth, called the perigee. If you’ve ever looked into the night sky and noticed the moon appearing much larger and brighter than usual, you were probably seeing the moon at perigee, also called a “supermoon.”
In a lunar eclipse, the sun, the moon, and the Earth align so that the moon passes into the earth’s shadow. While these eclipses aren’t particularly uncommon, it’s quite rare for a total lunar eclipse to coincide with a supermoon — only five have occurred since 1900.
The eclipse will be visible in North and South America, Europe, Africa, Western Asia, the Eastern Pacific Ocean region and here on the Ustream channel. The moon will begin dimming slightly at 8:11 pm; the total eclipse will start at 10:11 pm and will peak at around 10:47 pm (all times EDT).