An incredible once in a lifetime lunar event will sweep our skies and Australians have the best view in the world.
Last seen 150 years ago, the super red blue moon is the astonishing trifecta worth staying awake for.
The event will include a supermoon, a red moon and a blue moon all taking place at the same time.
Southern Cross University geographer Professor Bill Boyd said while every moon was special in its own way, the fact three were happening at once was what made it stand out.
‘It’s a really unusual thing … it’s a really special thing all three things are happening on the same night,’ Mr Boyd said.
‘Records show it happening 150 years ago … we won’t see one in our lifetime again.’
‘A supermoon is a really spectacular thing when the moon is as close as it’ll ever get, it’s much bigger and brighter,’ Mr Boyd said.
‘We’ve got a blue moon … but a really big event is a lunar eclipse (red moon).
‘It happens when the sun, the Earth and the moon are completely aligned, so that the moon travels through the Earth’s shadow. It occurs two to four times a year, though not usually a full eclipse.’
With most places around the globe will get a view of the spectacle, the east coast of Australia will get the best vantage point.
THE SPECTACULAR SUPER RED BLUE MOON
WHAT IS IT?
The lunar event is when a supermoon, a red moon and a blue moon happen at the same time.
A supermoon is when the moon is the closest it will ever be to earth.
A red moon is a lunar eclipse where the moon, sun and earth all align.
A blue moon is used to describe a second full moon in a month.
WHEN DOES IT HAPPEN?
Once every 150 years.
WHERE CAN IT BE SEEN?
Australia, NSW north coast and Gold Coast – 10.48pm and ends at 2.11am
Australia – anywhere with a clear view to the north
New York – early in the morning
India – early in evening
WHEN WILL IT TAKE PLACE?
January 31, 2018
Mr Boyd said while people in countries like New York and India would be able to see the moon, Australia would be treated to the full show with the moon sitting in the centre of the sky.
‘We’ll have the best view in the house on the east coast of Australia,’ he said.
‘It’ll be a larger than usual moon, brighter than usual and travelling half way through the sky.
‘We have some light scattered, red light scattered, a red glow for about an hour and 20 mins and an hour before that it gradually gets darker.’
Across the NSW north coast and Gold Coast, the super red blue moon starts at 10.48pm (NSW time), eclipsing fully from 11.51 pm to 1.07 am, ending at 2.11am, with a clear view to the north the best for viewing the super red blue moon on January 31.
Some of the best vantage points include the Gold Coast, Lismore and Coffs Harbour.
‘It’s a once in lifetime event, few of us will never see it again I should think, it’s truly spectacular and worth staying up for,’ Mr Boyd said.
‘I hope that the skies are clear … but if there’s patchy clouds it may look more dramatic.’