The first lunar eclipse of the year was in January and the next lunar eclipse is scheduled to occur between June 5 and June 6. Just like the first eclipse, the upcoming lunar eclipse will be a penumbral one, which is a bit hard to distinguish from a normal Full Moon. It happens when the Moon moves through the faint outer part of the Earth’s shadow.
When and where to watch
The upcoming penumbral lunar eclipse will occur between June 5 and June 6, 2020. It will start at 17:45:51 on June 5 as per Central Africa Time (CAT) and reach the maximum eclipse at 19:24:55 when the faint shadow completely engulfs the Moon. The penumbral eclipse will end at 21:04:03.
How does lunar eclipse occur?
During a Full Moon, when the Moon, the Erath, and the Sun form a straight line and the Earth comes between the Sun and the Moon, the lunar eclipse takes place. The Earth blocks the Sun’s rays from directly reaching the Moon, casting a shadow on the Moon. Based on the alignment of the three celestial bodies, there are three kinds of lunar eclipses– total lunar eclipse, partial lunar eclipse, and penumbral lunar eclipse.
What is a penumbral lunar eclipse?
A penumbral lunar eclipse happens when the Sun, Earth, and the Moon are imperfectly aligned and the Earth blocks some of the Sun’s light from directly reaching the Moon with the outer part of its shadow. This part is called the penumbra and thus comes the name penumbral lunar eclipse. Since the penumbra is much fainter than the dark core of the Earth’s shadow, a penumbral eclipse is hard to distinguish from the normal Full Moon.
Apart from this lunar eclipse in June, the year 2020 has two more lunar eclipses to come. The third lunar eclipse of 2020 will occur in July and the fourth and last lunar eclipse will occur in November 2020. These two eclipses are also penumbral ones.