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Montréal Space for Life Invites You to Come Watch The Last Total Eclipse of the Moon Until 2019

Montréal, September 23, 2015 - 

Montréal Space for Life invites you to join the Rio Tinto Alcan Planetarium team, in person or virtually, on Sunday, September 27, starting at 8:30 p.m., to watch the last total eclipse of the Moon that will be visible from Quebec until 2019. The eclipse coincides with the biggest full Moon of the year. Our science interpreters and amateur astronomers from the Société d’astronomie du Planétarium de Montréal will be on hand inside and outside the Planetarium to watch the Earth’s natural satellite during this event. They’ll be happy to let you look through their telescopes. If you can’t join us in person, send us your observations in pictures or words, on Twitter, Instagram and Facebook, using the hashtag #LunarEclipse2015.


Special activity – Observation of the lunar eclipse*

FREE – Sunday, September 27, 8:30 p.m. to midnight
In front of the Rio Tinto Alcan Planetarium main entrance
4801 avenue Pierre-de Coubertin, Montréal – Viau metro station
Bring your cameras/tripods/binoculars (this eclipse is not dangerous to look at directly). Our science interpreters will be on hand. Access to telescopes.
Chairs available.

* The activity may be cancelled without prior notice if it is overcast or raining. Also, there will be no shows in the Planetarium’s theatres that evening.

What is a lunar eclipse?
A total eclipse of the Moon occurs at the full Moon, when the Earth passes between the Sun and the Moon, but only if the three bodies are perfectly aligned. The Moon’s path then takes it through the shadow cast by the Earth (the penumbra). Although the Moon moves at a speed of 1 km/s in its orbit, the Earth’s shadow is so large that an eclipse can last up to 100 minutes from start to finish. A total lunar eclipse is visible from southern Quebec every three and a half years, on average, but statistically the weather systems in southern Quebec in late September mean that it is just as likely for the sky to be clear or partly cloudy as for it to be overcast. For more details, see our blog on the subject:

The eclipse, minute by minute


The astronomical phenomenon begins, on the east-southeast horizon. The left-hand side of the Moon enters the Earth’s penumbra.


The partial phases of the eclipse begin. A clearly defined portion of the Moon disappears.


Total eclipse: the Moon is entirely in the shadow cast by our planet. Over the next 72 minutes, the Moon takes on a copper hue caused by the sunlight that is refracted through our atmosphere and faintly illuminates the lunar surface.


Maximum eclipse


The Moon begins leaving the Earth’s shadow: the total eclipse is over. The last partial phases continue until 00:27 a.m., when our satellite emerges completely from the shadows. The eclipse is over at 1:22 a.m.

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Contact our team

Karine Jalbert
Communications Co-ordinator
514 872-1453

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