CHARLOTTE, NC (WBTV) - Let's talk about space weather for a minute. There's a rare event taking place early Saturday morning, featuring a full eclipse of the moon.
This particular lunar eclipse will begin at 6:15 am Saturday morning (EDT)... and at its peak the moon will be in full shadow for only five minutes. NASA scientists say this will be the shortest solar eclipse of the century.
There are two problems with viewing this event from the Carolinas. First, we'll likely have quite a bit of cloud cover Saturday morning.
Secondly, even with clear skies this eclipse is only about 50% visible from the Eastern United States. But if you have a few minutes to spare just before sunrise... and the skies are clear over your house you'll get to catch part of the show.
Also worth noting that Saturday mornings event will be the third in a string of four total lunar eclipses over an 18 month period. Four total lunar eclipses in a row is known as a Tetrad.
The first eclipse of this Tetrad came on April 15, 2014... the second on October 8th, 2014. Next up is Saturdays eclipse, and if you miss this one you can try for number four on Monday Sept 28th, 2015.
Of course it's also Easter Weekend and Friday night marks the first night of passover for the Jewish faith. Some Christians believe a "Blood Moon" is a sign of a possible earth changing event... referencing this quote in the King James Bible... "The sun shall be turned into darkness, and the moon into blood, before the great and the terrible day of the Lord comes," (Joel 2:31).
Check out this video from NASA for a great lunar eclipse explainer » https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_70M4lkLKPk
Back to weather here in our next of the woods... we'll see a chance for a few showers and thunderstorms Thursday night and Friday morning.
A cold front moves across the Carolinas on Saturday night, again bringing in a chance for showers and possible storms. And those are the clouds that may preclude your view of the eclipse. Barring any unforseen events we're looking at sunny skies returning Sunday with afternoon highs in the upper sixties.
Have a great weekend!