Supermoon lunar eclipse 2015: How to see the 'blood moon' on Sunday night

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By: Krystal Vivian kvivian@953mnc.com

(Photo supplied/Elkhart Truth)

There’s nothing you can do — a total eclipse of the moon will occur this weekend and it will be even more rare and special than usual.

The total lunar eclipse on Sunday, Sept. 27, will also be a supermoon, meaning it’s the closest full moon of the year, according to NASA. The moon on Sunday will appear about 14 percent larger and 30 percent brighter than usual.

Though a super moon lunar eclipse is a rare phenomenon, (it hasn’t happened since 1982 and won’t occur again until 2033), Notre Dame astrophysics professor Peter Garnavich said that the moon’s size might not be visibly different.

“The difference in size between the moon at closest approach and its size at the furthest point in its orbit is very small and is not obvious to most people,” Garnavich said. “The truly spectacular event is the total lunar eclipse, which will turn the Moon a deep red.”

That deep red is the reason total lunar eclipses are often called “blood moons.” When the sun’s rays cast a shadow on the moon, the light filters through dust in the Earth’s atmosphere. That reflection causes the moon to appear a shade of orange or red.

Special glasses aren’t needed to see the supermoon lunar total lunar eclipse, which will be visible across much of the world.

Michiana residents should look to the sky when the eclipse begins at 10:11 p.m. It will peak at about 10:47 p.m. and will still be visible until about 11:30 p.m.

The total lunar eclipse will also be streamed live online by NASA.

This blood moon is the fourth in a tetrad of total lunar eclipses, which also occurred April 14 and Oct. 8 in 2014 and April 4 in 2015. Lunar eclipse tetrads occur once about every 20 years.

If you take a photo of the super moon lunar eclipse on Sunday night, share it with us on our Facebook page or post it on Twitter and tag @953MNC.