New Delhi: The first celestial event of 2020, a penumbral lunar eclipse, is all set to take place today i.e. January 10 and skywatchers will be able to witness the phenomenon from all corners of India.
This lunar eclipse will be penumbral, meaning that the Earth will block some of the sunlight from reaching the moon and only the outer shadow (the penumbra) will fall on the moon. The January 10 lunar eclipse will coincide with the full Moon.
The US will not get to witness the January 10 eclipse as it will occur during its daylight hours but countries across Asia, Africa, Australia, Europe, will be able to see it.
What is penumbral lunar eclipse:
In a normal lunar eclipse, the moon passes through the central part of the earth’s shadow called umbra, and one witnesses considerable darkening of the lunar disc. But in case of January 10 penumbral lunar eclipse, there will be only a slight dimming of the lunar surface.
“To a naked eye it is sometimes a little difficult to recognise a penumbral lunar eclipse, though it is interesting to see the larger than usual appearance of the moon, and the shifts in shadow during the 4-hour period,” the Director of M P Birla Planetarium, Debiprosad Duari said.
Where can you see it
Due to clouds, cold weather, rain and snowfall, the penumbral lunar eclipse will not be visible much in Delhi, Uttar Pradesh, Punjab and other northern states of India. However, people living in southern India will be able to view it better.
Time in India and Duration
The eclipse will begin at 10.37 pm on January 10 and will end around 2.42 am on January 11. The full visual impact of the Chandra Grahan could be seen at around 12:41 am. During this time almost 90 per cent of the moon will be covered by the partial shadow region of the Earth.
The total duration of the Lunar Eclipse would be 4 hours and 5 minutes.
Next Lunar Eclipse
After January 10, the next three penumbral lunar eclipses of the year will take place on June 5, July 5 and November 30.
Is it safe?
Unlike Solar Eclipse, you do not need any special instrument to view the lunar eclipse. There will be no harm to your eyes, you can watch it with naked eyes and no special glasses will be required to watch the eclipse.
However, you’ll require a telescope to get a truly clear view.