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May’s Blood Orange Full Moon To Be Most Spectacular In Years

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May’s Blood Orange Full Moon To Be Most Spectacular In Years

May's full moon is the second of two supermoons in 2021 - lucky us.

We saw the pink supermoon back in April, and on 26th May, we'll bear witness to one of the brightest and boldest blood orange full moons in years. It's also known as the 'super flower blood moon.'

Here's everything you need to know about sighting it.

What does a blood moon mean?

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On 26th May 2021, we'll experience a total eclipse, which is when the sun, earth and moon align so that the earth's shadow covers over the moon. The blood moon owes its name to the colour the moon goes during the eclipse: a spooky dark orange/red colour.

This year, the super flower blood moon will turn a deep orange/red colour for 14 minutes, according to timeanddate.com. And this year, it's an extra special blood moon, because it'll be the first time it's coincided with a total eclipse in two and a half years, according to NASA.

Blood moon captured in Napa, US ' Credit: Unsplas/Bryan Goff
Blood moon captured in Napa, US ' Credit: Unsplas/Bryan Goff

The eclipse will happen as the moon reaches its closest point to Earth (lunar perigee), making it bigger and brighter than usual. That's why it's called a super flower blood moon.

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This year's eclipse is also special because it kicks off an "almost tetrad" which means four total eclipses in two years. It's almost a tetrad because three out of the four eclipses in the next two years will be full eclipses, while one is very nearly a total eclipse, but not quite according to experts. Anybody else having flashbacks of that chocolate orange advert with the teacher saying "full moon, half moon, total eclipse!"?

How to see the May 2021 blood moon in the UK

The lunar eclipse will only really be seen in the US and eastern Americas and parts of east Asia unfortunately, but UK stargazers can still see a fantastic blood orange moon.

The blood moon is said to be at its most visible in the UK at 12:15 am. Time and Date will be live-streaming the extraordinary lunar event on Youtube on 26th May, so you don't even need to be by a window.

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Blood orange moon 2021 ' Credit:NASA
Blood orange moon 2021 ' Credit:NASA

Weather forecast for blood moon

According to the MET office's long-term weather forecast, we could get treated to some clearer skies ready to see the blood moon. It says on their website: "There is a chance of more settled conditions to gradually become established. Rain and showers are likely to clear away to the east, leaving drier and less windy conditions behind."

Fingers crossed!

Featured Image Credit: NASA

Topics: Blood Moon

Laura Sanders
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