Antiguans and Barbudans witness a blood moon

Antiguans and Barbudans, as well as other observers across the countries of the Atlantic Basin has witnessed the return of the “Blood Moon”  late Sunday evening onto early Monday morning.

There was a total lunar eclipse when the dark blood red shadow of the Earth covered the entire Moon, which began at 9:30 p.m. and ended around 2 a.m. the next day.

A “blood moon” happens when Earth’s moon is in a total lunar eclipse. While it has no special astronomical significance, the view in the sky is striking as the usually whiteish moon becomes red or ruddy-brown.

The moon orbits around Earth, while Earth orbits around the sun. The moon takes about 27 days to orbit Earth and goes through regular phases in a 29.5-day cycle. The difference in these two cycles has to do with the relative positions of the sun, Earth and moon, which change during the moon’s orbit.

Lunar eclipses can only happen during a full moon, when the sun fully illuminates the surface. Usually a full moon has no eclipse because the moon orbits in a slightly different plane than the Earth and the sun do. However, at times the planes coincide. Earth passes in between the moon and the sun and cuts off the sunlight, causing an eclipse.

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