Full Worm Moon: How To See The First Lunar Eclipse Of 2024 In The USA

Calista Alma-
March 25, 2024

As the celestial calendar unfolds, anticipation builds among skywatchers for not one, but two astronomical events in the coming weeks. While the focus remains on the upcoming Great North American Eclipse on April 8th, tonight brings a lunar prelude as the Full Worm Moon graces the night sky with the year’s inaugural lunar eclipse.

During the overnight hours of March 24-25, the moon will elegantly glide into Earth’s outer shadow, known as the penumbra, heralding the approach of the impending total solar eclipse in April. This cosmic display offers enthusiasts a preview of celestial harmony.

Observers across the Americas, encompassing North and South, are positioned for optimal viewing of this lunar phenomenon. From March 24th to the 25th, the moon will spend approximately 4 hours and 40 minutes traversing the faint outer edge of Earth’s shadow, remaining within the penumbra throughout, as reported by Space.com.

In the eastern United States, the eclipse’s peak darkness will occur approximately a couple of hours before dawn on March 25th. The moon will enter the penumbra at 12:53 am EDT, with a subtle shadow visible by 2:38 am EDT, according to Space.com.

Lunar and solar eclipses are intricately linked, occurring when the moon aligns with specific points of its orbit. During this eclipse season, spanning from March 16th to April 23rd, celestial mechanics reveal the captivating interplay of shadows and light.

At the peak of this penumbral eclipse, observers may notice a subtle dimming of the moon’s lower left edge, signifying a brief moment of cosmic connection. Around the eclipse’s peak, over 70% of the moon’s diameter will be obscured by shadow, casting a delicate veil over its luminous surface.

For avid stargazers across various time zones in the USA, an eclipse timeline delineates the moon’s journey through the penumbra. From entry to departure, each phase presents a distinct perspective on the mesmerizing interplay of shadows against the night canvas.

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