Skywatchers in California View “Super Blue Moon”

January 31, 2018 Last Updated: January 31, 2018

Sky-gazers in Los Angeles in the U.S. state of California watched on Wednesday (January 31) as a total lunar eclipse brought together three rare phenomena not seen simultaneously in the Western hemisphere for more than 150 years.

The eclipse coincides with a so-called blue moon—or the second full moon in a calendar month—and a super moon, when the moon is at, or near, its closest to Earth.

The entire passage will last over three hours, during which the moon will turn a coppery red as sunlight going through Earth’s atmosphere bounces off its surface, termed a ‘blood moon‘.

The “lunar trifecta”, as it is described by U.S. space agency NASA, last took place in the Western hemisphere on March 31, 1866, when the second dome of the United States Capitol had just been completed and H.G. Wells, author of “The Time Machine”, was born.

The rare eclipse is also expected to be visible across East Asia, Southeast Asia and Australia.