In the year of clogged up lunar calendar, with blood moons, blue moons, and supermoons appearing and mesmerising us from time to time, a rare ‘black moon’ has is also expected to rise this Friday night. This new occurrence will turn the sky dark with the Western Hemisphere experiencing its second new moon of the month.
The black moon is a rare sight, and experts are still trying to figure out its definition.
According to one faction, black moon occurs about once every 19 years after the month of February skips a full moon. And another group of scientists say that it happens when a month skips a new Moon and when the Moon and the Sun have the same elliptical longitude.
But the most standard definition, according to the Time and Date website, is that a black moon is the second new moon in a calendar month. So this means that for the second time in the month of September the Moon will be entirely invisible in the night sky for those the people in the Western Hemisphere.
A new moon occurs when the side of the Moon facing away from the Earth is lit up by the Sun, rather than the one facing towards the Earth. This renders it virtually invisible to the naked eye, and that’s what essentially will happen here.
As Joe Rao explains, usually there is only one full moon and one new moon each month. But sometimes we do get anomalies like this, with getting several or none of each in a certain month.
Rao elaborated, “A second full moon in a single calendar month is sometimes called a blue moon. A black moon is supposedly the flip side of a blue moon: the second new moon in a single calendar month.”
The upcoming event will start at 8:11 pm Eastern Time (5:11 pm Pacific Time) on Friday, September 30. The people living in the Western Hemisphere can view this, which covers North and South America, and certain western portions of Europe and Africa.
For the folks in the Eastern Hemisphere (Europe, Africa, Asia, Australia), don’t be sad. You will get your fair share of the black moon next month, with the first new moon expected for October 1, and the second new Black moon to be sighted on either October 30 or 31.
Here’s NASA with a Moon’s-eye view of the lunar cycles.
Are you looking forward towards the event? Let us know in the comments’ section below!