Many moons to see in the sky or online

By now, you’re probably aware of the upcoming “Super Moon” on Wednesday.

A super moon is when you have a new or full moon at the same time the Moon is at its closest point to Earth in its orbit. The lunar disc will appear 14 percent larger and 30 percent brighter than normal.

But this is more than a super moon. It’s also a “Blue Moon,” or the second full moon of the month. And, to top it off, it also will be a total lunar eclipse, when the Moon passes into the Earth’s shadow. Because the Moon takes on a reddish hue during a lunar eclipse, it is often called a “Blood Moon.”

So, on Wednesday, you’ll have the opportunity to view a “Super Blue Blood Moon,” something that hasn’t happened since 1866.

Here’s the thing, though, for North Dakotans — you’ll have to get up fairly early Wednesday morning to see it. The eclipse begins at 4:51 a.m., just as the Moon is starting to set in the West.

Below are some websites you can visit for more information on this rare event:

If you’re not up in time or the sky is cloudy, you can watch the lunar eclipse live online. NASA and a number of other sites will be streaming the lunar eclipse from various locations:

If you miss this rare triple play altogether, you won’t have to wait another 150 years for the next one. It seems another Super Blue Blood Moon will occur only 19 years from now: Jan. 31, 2037, at 8:06 a.m.

Mini Moon

As if we didn’t have enough Moons to think about, here’s another one — the “Mini Moon” or “Micro Full Moon” on July 27.

That is when we have a full moon and the Moon is at its furthest point from Earth in its orbit.  In this case, the Moon will appear 14 percent smaller than normal and 30 percent dimmer.

And then there’s the “Black Moon,” which can mean either a month in which there are no new or full moons (this can only happen in February) or the second new moon in a month.

Below are some websites that have a list of various moon names and what they mean (including “Worm Moon” and “Pink Moon”):

Keith Darnay is the Tribune’s online manager and has worked in the online world for more than two decades. His site is at www.darnay.com.

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