27th July will see the century's longest total lunar eclipse
July 2018 will witness the longest total lunar eclipse of the 21st century.
The eclipse, which will occur on July 27, will last a lengthy 1 hour and 43 minutes, giving people ample time to view the phenomenon.
For Indians, the good news is that it will be visible from just about anywhere in the country.
Here's more on it.
Timings of the partial and total eclipses
According to Debiprosad Duari, Director, Research & Academic, MP Birla Planetarium, Kolkata, the 1 hour 43 minute long total lunar eclipse will be preceded and followed by partial lunar eclipses lasting over an hour each.
The first partial eclipse will start around 11:54pm IST on 27th July night, and the total lunar eclipse will start around 1am IST on July 28.
The darkest hour of the eclipse
"The greatest eclipse, when moon will look the darkest, will be at around 1:52 am and the totality will continue at 2:43 am. After this period the moon will remain partially eclipsed till 3:49 am of July 28," said Duari in a press release.
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The 27th July eclipses will be one of the longest
Earlier this year, there was a total lunar eclipse lasting 1 hour and 16 minutes on January 31.
For a total lunar eclipse to last a long enough time, the moon has to pass through the center of the Earth's shadow.
The 27th July total lunar eclipse will come very close to the longest possible lunar eclipse duration of 1 hour and 47 minutes.
The next total lunar eclipse is in 2019
By July end, 2018 will have already seen two total lunar eclipses. The next total lunar eclipse will be on 21st January, 2019, when it will last a shorter 1 hour and 2 minutes, resultant of the moon passing north of the Earth's shadow's center.
MP Birla Planetarium
Research & Academic