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2021 to see total lunar eclipse and meteor showers visible in Taiwan

Astronomy buffs in Taiwan can look forward to a total eclipse/blood moon and two promising meteor showers this year, according to Taipei Astronomical Museum.

The eclipse will last from 6:31 p.m. to 9:51 p.m. on May 26, meaning that most part of the event, which will make the moon turn blood-red at one point, will be visible across Taiwan, the museum said.

During the eclipse, the full moon will have a copper hue when it becomes completely obscured by the Earth's shadow between 7:09 p.m. and 7:28 p.m., it said.

In a total lunar eclipse, the Earth is positioned between the sun and the moon, blocking sunlight from what would otherwise be a radiant full moon.

However, the moon does not completely disappear in a total lunar eclipse because of the refraction of sunlight from the Earth's atmosphere into the shadow cone.

The last time such an event took place was in 2018, while the next total lunar eclipse will not happen until 2022, the museum said.

Meanwhile, two prolific meteor showers are expected: the Perseids in August and the Geminids in December, according to the museum.

The Perseids are forecast to be active between July 17 and Aug. 24, with about 100 shooting stars produced per hour when they peak on Aug. 13, the museum said.

The best time to catch the Geminids is between Dec. 4-17, and during its peak on Dec. 14, around 150 meteor starts are predicted each hour, it said.

However, sky gazing for the meteor showers on their peak dates could be impacted by the first quarter moon during the first half of the night, museum researchers said, suggesting astronomy buffs should stay up late for a better view. -Central News Agency


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