Offbeat

Sky Gazers Excited For Century

Bhubaneswar: Come July 27, sky gazers will get to chance to witness a rare celestial phenomenon including the longest Lunar Eclipse of the century. Scientists have termed the 'blood moon' as the longest lunar eclipse to take place in a century when the moon will be visible to the human naked eye in a reddish colour.
On the occasion of Guru Purnima, people in not only Odisha but throughout the world will be able to see the lunar eclipse also called as 'blood moon' by scientists.
Deputy Director of Bhubaneswar based Pathani Samanta Planetorium, Subendhu Patnaik has urged people especially students to witness the celestial phenomenon without any problems. The planetarium is also organising some awareness programmes ahead of the mega event.
Reports say the entire event will start from  10.44 pm on July 27 night to 04.58 am early in the morning the next day. The full eclipse will last between 1 am and 2.43 am.
During the event, the moon will appear like a bright reddish orange colour and even turn into deep, dark red being lit up by Sun's light through a process called refraction  when Sun's light passes through the Earth's atmosphere and then bent back towards the moon.
People can easily enjoy the spectacle provided the sky remains clear during the event.
Similarly, on the same day, planet Mars will also come closest to Earth for the first time in more than a fifteen years and all set to shine even more brightly than the largest planet Jupiter.
Last time, the Red Planet  came closer to the Earth was in 2003. It is to be noted that Mars and Earth whip around the sun at different speeds and in elliptical orbits. So at some point both the planets are at their closest point to the sun, known as perihelion. On July 27, Mars make a 'perihelic opposition' to Earth.
People will witness Mars rising every evening from eastern direction and reaching the top by midnight and spending time till the day breaks. It would look as the third brightest body after Moon and Venus during nights of July and August.

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