An incredibly rare event occurred on the night of the 31st January 2018. Given the long name of a ‘Super Blue Blood Moon’, this very uncommon lunar event hasn’t happened since 1866!
A super blue blood moon is a coalition of several different types of moon. You may have seen a blood moon, (a lunar eclipse), when the moon in the nights sky has an eerie red tinge. Have you ever thought that the moon was particularly large looking out the window one night? Well you may have been experiencing a super moon, when the moon is closer to the Earth than normal due to it’s orbit. But a blue moon isn’t a visual occurance, but refers to the second full moon in the space of one month. This is where the phrase ‘Once in a blue moon’ comes from.
NASA documented the momentous occasion by allowing around 101 million space fans worldwide to watch the ‘Super Blue Blood Moon’ from various angles using their live cameras. In fact, ‘#SuperBlueBloodMoon’ wracked up thousands of tweets from the nation who had their eyes glued to the skies that evening. I’m sure it’s safe to say that modern technology certainly had its uses when it allowed so many people to express their views and tune into the NASA’s live streaming of the super blue moon – an event which they may have otherwise missed.
Why is it called a #SuperBlueBloodMoon?
🌕Supermoon – When the Moon is at or near its closest point to Earth
🔵Blue Moon – The second full moon in a month
🔴Blood Moon – The red tint Earth’s shadow casts on the Moon during a lunar eclipse
— NASA (@NASA) January 31, 2018
Across the world people flocked to see this incredibly rare event, with observatories such as the Beijing Planetarium in China and the Griffith Observatory in Hollywood taking in many fascinated and eager people.
It’s certainly wonderful to have been able to watch these somewhat magical events unfold – a true once in a lifetime experience, unless you have incredible luck of course.