The total lunar eclipse of January 21 2000 was visible over Europe, western Africa, and North and South America, providing a spectacle for a large part of the Earth's population -- where it wasn't cloudy!
The partial eclipse began at 03:01:30 UT and ended just under 3½ hours later at 06:25:31 UT. The total eclipse lasted for over one hour; it began at 04:04:37 UT and ended at 05:22:25 UT, with the moment of greatest eclipse at 04:43:31 UT. (This put it in January 20, local time, for most observers in America.)
The penumbral eclipse -- the least exciting, and hardest to see part -- began at 02:02:56 UT UT and ended at 07:24:09 UT. More information on this eclipse may be found at Fred Espenak's site.
This animation and photo set show the last stages of the eclipse, photographed from Alameda, California, as the Moon was coming out of the Earth's shadow. The Moon was partly obscured by thin cloud. The camera is a Nikon Coolpix 950 digital, with a 2x teleconverter. The times shown against the stages of the eclipse are in PST; add 8 hours for UT.
The following map shows the areas where the partial eclipse was visible:
Visibility of the partial eclipse.
This map shows the position of the Moon (the cross in the centre) at the time of maximum eclipse. The darkened area sees the whole partial eclipse; the pink areas to the right see only the beginning; and the blue areas on the left see the end.
The following map shows the areas where the total eclipse was visible:
Visibility of the total eclipse.
This map shows the position of the Moon (the cross in the centre) at the time of maximum eclipse. The darkened area sees the whole total eclipse; the pink areas to the right see only the beginning; and the blue areas on the left see the end.
Your hopelesss, movie-addicted host nearly missed the whole thing! Well, blame it on the clouds again... ;-)
Well, I saw the eclipse begin -- barely -- through thick cloud, as I left work. By the time totality had begun, there wasn't much to see but a faint orange-red glow, so I settled down to enjoy a Jackie Chan movie, reminding myself to get up and check the weather periodically.
Of course, I totally got lost in the movie, but eventually I did remember, and leapt up just minutes before the end of totality to see if anything could be seen -- and just as I did, someone in the movie said "there's a beautiful Moon out tonight", or something to that effect!
Sure enough, the cloud had thinned and the Moon was visible -- not clearly, but enough for some photos of the end of totality, which you can see above.
At least my Mum got a good view of the eclipse from her house:
I set the alarm for 4 am, as that seemed to be the only time I heard mentioned, and obviously missed the full eclipse, which turned the moon orange. When I started to look at it, it was a beautiful turquoise and blue colour, with still a flush of orange on the right hand side.
We had a very clear sky with the stars appearing very bright beside it, and what struck me most was the global effect, it was just hanging there, in space, instead of looking like a flat white disc as usual. I sat and looked at it for an hour, until the shadow had passed and the light started to come in again. No fuss about it next day, as most of the country had heavy cloud, so no-one seems to know that we had a lovely view of it up here, and can't wait for next January, for the next one! I obviously saw the complete eclipse, but did not see a red or orange over the whole of the moon, when I first saw it there was a pale coral,(not a dark red) colour over the right hand side of the moon, covering less than half, and fading as I got settled down to watch it, while the rest of the moon was pale, shades of turquoise, blues and greys, until the bright light started to appear on the left hand side.
It was a very clear, frosty night, and the stars close to the moon were very bright, as predicted by some expert.
Well, since the eclipse was total from 04:04 to 05:22, I have no idea what caused the strange colours. Ideas?
The following web sites have pictures of this eclipse:
Copyright (C) 1995-2005 Ian Cameron Smith.
visits since 18Aug05. Last modified: Sat Feb 18 19:05:55 GMT 2006 ($Revision: 1.9 $)