A subtle, "lite" lunar eclipse is set to happen on Wednesday, March 23. Space enthusiasts may want to pray for a clear sky as the said event is rather more faint compared to total eclipses.

Details, Dates And Times

First, there will be a waxing gibbous moon in the eastern sky come nightfall on Tuesday, March 22. The moon will then turn full on Wednesday at 12:01 a.m. universal time or 8:01 a.m. EDT, 7:01 a.m. CDT, 6:01 a.m. MDT and 5:01 a.m. PDT, as per U.S. time zones.

The penumbral eclipse will begin at 2:39 a.m. PDT and will turn to its most visible, darkest and deepest state at around 4:47 a.m. PDT. The show will be most visible in the western part of North America. People in the east will not be able to finish the event as the moon will set in the west come sunrise.

People residing in New Zealand, Japan and in areas near the Pacific Ocean may witness the entire event on the evening of Wednesday at around 11:47 p.m. UT.

For all other people residing in parts of the world where the full moon will occur during the night time, they may view the partial Earth shadow falling on the face of the moon. Meanwhile, experts suggest people living in North America to wait for the event shortly before dawn breaks.

Remember that the lite lunar eclipse is subtle so people who would want to see it must keep a keen eye. However, those with really sharp eyes and will be blessed with clear skies may witness the slight darkening of the moon more efficiently.

What Is A Lunar Eclipse?

Lunar eclipses happen when the moon, sun and Earth align. The Earth's shadow is directed on the moon's surface, causing it to darken.

The upcoming event is specifically called a penumbral lunar eclipse becauset only the outer shadow of the Earth will cover the moon. This results in a much more subtle effect than total or partial lunar eclipses.

"A lunar eclipse can last for a few hours," NASA says. "At least two lunar eclipses happen every year."

For the upcoming event, observers will witness 78 percent of the southern region of the moon graze through the outer, pale shadow of the Earth.

With this, people should set their expectations right by not looking forward to a dramatic darkening of the sky. After all, it is a "lite" type of lunar eclipse.

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