From Monday night into Tuesday morning, a Blood Moon will be visible from North America, caused by a total lunar eclipse.

Blood Moon

The lunar eclipse is said to start around 12:54 a.m. ET on Tuesday, April 15, but the moon will not be totally eclipsed until around 3:07 a.m. ET, and therefore will be most visible then. The total lunar eclipse will last from 3:07 a.m. to 4:25 a.m. ET.

Despite the late hour, what makes this lunar eclipse stand out is its name: a Blood Moon. During a total eclipse, the way the light is refracted in the Earth’s atmosphere makes the moon appear deep red, thus inspiring the name of Blood Moon.

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Total Lunar Eclipse Visible In North America

Interested people in North and South America should be able to see the Blood Moon shine bright red around 3:07 a.m. ET without a telescope, weather permitting. Unfortunately, the Blood Moon will not be visible from the rest of the world. However, if you cannot see the Blood Moon, due to weather or other conditions, several outlets will be streaming the event life. NASA will be hosting a live online chat throughout the eclipse with astrophysicist Alphonse Sterling and NASA astronomer Mitzi Adams starting at 1 a.m. ET. NASA will also be showing the event on a live Ustream, through Slooh’s live YouTube feed and Slooh’s iPad Celestial Event Viewer.

A total lunar eclipse occurs when the sun and Earth align with the moon, and the Earth blocks the light from the sun, casting the moon completely in the Earth’s shadow. This is just the first of four total lunar eclipses expected to occur over the next year – the group of four is called a tetrad. The next total lunar eclipse visible from North America will occur on Oct. 8.

Are Blood Moons A Biblical Sign?

Of course, some believe that Blood Moons represent a Biblical sign of disasters to come. Texas Cornerstone Church founder and televangelist pastor John Hagee, 73, has cautioned that the tetrad no doubt has “prophetic significance.” While Hagee did not say that the Blood Moon would bring the end of the world, he did say that the tetrad means that “a world-shaking event…will happen between April 2014 and October 2015.”

Hagee has written a book on the subject of the tetrad, entitled Four Blood Moons: Something Is About To Change. And he will hold a Evangelism Television special on April 15, the day of the first total lunar eclipse.

“When you see these signs, the Bible says, lift up your head and rejoice, your redemption draweth nigh… I believe that the Heavens are God’s billboard, that He has been sending signals to Planet Earth, but we just have not been picking them up,” Hagee told his congregation.

Olivia Truffaut-Wong

More on the Lunar Eclipse:

> What Is A Lunar Eclipse? Full Moon Observed Around The World

> Moon Dust: NASA Exploring Causes Of The Moon’s Glow

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