Enjoy The Blue Moon In Mumbai Today

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Blue Moon Image: NASA
Blue Moon Image: NASA
Blue Moon Image: NASA

If you ever wondered where the term ‘once in a blue moon’ comes from, here is your chance to see it first hand. Mumbai, and many cities around the world, will witness a second full moon in a calendar month today, a rare phenomenon called the ‘Blue Moon’. The Blue Moon is seen once in 2-3 years and the last reported Blue Moon was sighted in 2009 according to the Times Of India and in 2010 according to the Deccan Herald (well!).

So what really is the ‘Blue Moon’? The normal interval between two full moons is 29 and 1/2 days and so that is why usually there is one full moon each month. However, when the full moon occurs on the first day of the month, a recurrence is witnessed in the same calendar month and is called the Blue Moon. This can happen in any month of the year, except February since it has only 29 days even in a leap year.

Is it really blue? The term ‘Blue Moon’ was coined by modern astronomy writers who wanted to draw attention to the ‘second full moon’ in a calendar month. In the past, people have found a greyish or bluish hue when this second full moon was seen in the same month. This could have been for various reasons, the clouds, smoke or even forest fires through which the moon was sighted. However it did ensure that the term became a common phrase, symbolising an event that seldom occurs.

What time can the Blue Moon be seen in Mumbai? Whether a particular place will have a Blue Moon or not, will be determined by its time zone. The exact time of August 31, 2012 full moon to the nearest minute is 7:28 pm IST, mentions Mumbai Nehru Planetarium Director, Arvind Paranjape in his note announcing the sighting of the Blue Moon. “Nearly everywhere in the world, it will be the Blue Moon day on August 31. But for places like Auckland or Wellington in New Zealand which are in time zone +12 it will be September 1″, he adds.

“As we had good rains in many parts across the country the rising full moon of August 31, soon after the sunset should offer a good viewing pleasure. Rains would have washed away the floating dust in the atmosphere and the Moon should look bright and soothing to the eyes,” Paranjpye notes.

Let’s hope it does, because the next Blue Moon might not happen again until July 2015!

So where in Mumbai will you be watching the Blue Moon from…

Post By Garima Sharma (111 Posts)

Founding Editor at MumbaiMag, graffiti and street art lover, traveller, blogger and amateur photographer, slave to Thor, my Lab.

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Garima Sharma

Garima Sharma
Founding Editor at MumbaiMag, graffiti and street art lover, traveller, blogger and amateur photographer, slave to Thor, my Lab.