HAVANA – While women are dreaming of the “blue prince”, astrologers are looking forward to the blue supermoon that will be visible this January 31st, with a series of special conditions that have not coincided for over 150 years.
Although some people think that the term is related to color, it actually refers to the succession of two full moons within the same month of the calendar, something that happens approximately every three years.
What is really significant about this event is that a Blue supermoon, a ‘moon of blood’ and a ‘blue moon’ will coincide, and it can be observed in different parts of the world.
According to experts, the second moon of this month will not only approach the Earth in a special way, giving rise to what is known as supermoon, but also the Earth will be perfectly aligned between its natural satellite and the Sun, causing a total lunar eclipse.
In this scenario, the moon will achieve a color between orange and reddish, 14 percent brighter than normal.
The phenomenon can be observed from dawn to dawn, at different times, depending on the territories.
In North America, Alaska or Hawaii, the eclipse will be visible before dawn on January 31st. In the Middle East, Asia, Eastern Russia, Australia and New Zealand, the supermoon of blue blood can be seen on the morning of that same day.
In Western Europe and most of Africa and South America, the show will occur partially, as they will be areas not affected by the eclipse.
Scientists will seize the opportunity, especially the eclipse, to analyze the effects of rapid cooling of the Moon’s surface.
“During a lunar eclipse, the oscillation of the temperature is so dramatic that it is as if the surface of the Moon went from being in an oven to being in a freezer in a few hours,” said Mr. Noah Petro, an expert at the space flight centre of NASA.
For this reason, although there are many studies that are dedicated to investigate the Moon, the new information collected can be useful for practical purposes, such as finding suitable landing sites and understanding the evolution of the satellite surface.
“These studies will help us tell the story of how large and small impacts are changing the surface of the Moon during geological time,” Petro added.
After this very peculiar event, you will have to wait until December 31st, 2028 and then until January 31st, 2037, to witness another total eclipse.
A new special event for this 2018 will take place at the end of February and the beginning of March, with the alignment of Saturn, Mars and Jupiter during the dawn. On March 8th, the Moon will join them in a waning quarter.
Thus, January 31st promises to be a special day, a unique opportunity to experience this phenomenon that occurs after 150 years, with a huge mix of red and blue tones that invite you to reflect on the Moon, that distant mirror of the soul.