Total lunar eclipse - not visible in the Maldives

I just scanned over the news headlines of the Maldivian media to see if there has been any mention of the lunar eclipse that is to take place tomorrow morning but, quite unsurprisingly, found none. Anyway, I thought I'd dish out some useful info for anyone interested in it.

Although tomorrows eclipse is a total lunar eclipse the eclipsing will not be visible in the Maldives as the moon sets well before it happens. Instead, Maldives will witness what is known as a penumbral eclipse starting 5:34 AM on 21 Feb (local time) as the Moon enters the penumbra - which, sadly, most likely will not bring about much discernible difference for the naked eye. At the time, the moon will be well on its way to set and can be seen approximately West-Northwest at an elevation of 9.5 degrees in the sky. The moon sets at 6.18 AM, which is well before the partial eclipse phase kicks off at 6.43 AM.

If you are disappointed, then wait for the partial lunar eclipse that is to take place on the 16 of August this year which should be clearly visible throughout the Maldives. As for me, I hope to be up tonight watching this magnificent event here in the UK where the total eclipsing is to be visible - it truly is a wondrous sight after all!

More info:
- NASA page about the 20 February eclipse including the visibility mapping
- General information on eclipses (+ listing of future eclipses)

Hope that was useful. :-)


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