WASHINGTON, June 25 (UPI) — A partial lunar eclipse Saturday will appear magnified in the United States by an effect known as the “moon illusion,” scientists say.
In many parts of the United States and Canada, the early Saturday eclipse will appear larger because it will occur while the moon is close to the western horizon, the BBC reported Friday.
At its maximum, 54 percent of the moon’s diameter will be covered. This will occur about 7:30 a.m. EDT, halfway through the 3-hour eclipse event.
Because the moon, sun and Earth aren’t perfectly aligned, the eclipse won’t reach totality, the BBC said.
The National Aeronautics and Space Administration said when the moon is low-hanging, it looks “unnaturally large when (it) beam(s) through trees, buildings and other foreground objects.”
“Observers in India, Japan, and parts of East Asia will experience the same phenomenon,” NASA wrote on its Web site.
“They’ll see the eclipse on Saturday evening as the moon is rising.”
Because of the timing, the eclipse won’t be visible from Europe, the BBC said.
Copyright 2010 United Press International, Inc. (UPI). Any reproduction, republication, redistribution and/or modification of any UPI content is expressly prohibited without UPI’s prior written consent.