Posts Tagged ‘Astronomy’

Total Lunar Eclipse of 28 July 2018 (estimated)

23 July, 2018

This Friday, 27 July 2018 we have a chance to see a Total Lunar Eclipse though, from Lerwick the event will be more than half over before the Moon even rises here. Add to that the fact that the Sun sets after the Moon rises and it will be a real challenge to view or image the phenomenon in Shetland at all! Our best chance will be towards the end of totality about half way through the “blue hour” (the hour after sunset). Below are the timings for those that wish to try to see the so called “blood moon”.

All timings are for Lerwick in British Summer Time (BST). To convert to Universal Time (UT), also known as GMT, deduct 1 hour.

(Total Eclipse begins 20:30)
(Maximum Eclipse 21:21)

Moonrise 21:39
(Sunset 21:49)
Total Eclipse ends 22:13
Partial Eclipse ends 23:19
Penumbral Eclipse ends 00:28 (28/7/2018)

Excitingly, Mars lies 5° below the Moon, unfortunately rising (at 22:51 BST) sometime after totality ends, while Saturn lies roughly 31° west of the Moon, having risen at 19:58 BST. But you’ll need clear skies fairly close to the horizon as Mars only rises to about 4° at its highest point.

Here’s a photo I took of the total lunar eclipse of 21 December 2010 that may give an idea of what the Moon might look like if the sky is clear. But it may not even be this visible.

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Milky Way at St Ninian’s tombolo and over Ireland, Shetland

4 October, 2016
I thought I’d missed the best chance to photograph the Milky Way on Sunday night, which had been exceptionally clear and wind free, whereas Monday evening had turned cloudy and there was a strong wind. But later on the sky cleared for about an hour so I thought I’d try my luck. So I headed out to St Ninian’s, which I thought would provide a nice environment for the photos. These are both composite images; one vertical, one horizontal. I was lucky with both images; for the first one I was surprised by a car that happened to drive down the track shining its light over the tombolo. Initially I was a little put out, with my darkness all gone just as I was about to take the first photo of the composition. But then I saw the beauty of the whole tombolo lit up just for a few moments, long enough for me to take the first image, creating an amazing illuminated foreground. The image with the aurora and Milky Way was quite lucky too – the aurora had been good in Shetland for the past few days but it wasn’t expected this night. However, as I was taking my photos looking south, I kept checking to the north and could see a faint glow developing; then the aurora brightened, just long enough to create the second image. http://bit.ly/1lzUb8j