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Eclipse to coincide with 50th anniversary of Apollo 11 launch

PARIS: Fifty years to the day since mankind launched the first mission to set foot on it, the moon is set to treat Earthlings to a partial lunar eclipse on Tuesday. Britain’s Royal Astronomical Society said in a statement the event would be visible from parts of northern Europe, Asia, Africa, South America and Western Australia.

Lunar eclipses happen when the Earth gets aligned in between the Sun and the Moon. Tuesday’s eclipse should see around 60 percent of the moon’s visible surface obscured by the Earth’s shadow, known as the umbra, the RAS said. Best viewing conditions in Britain will be around 2230, it added.

Unlike solar eclipses, lunar eclipses can be seen by the naked eye without risk of damage. Experts recommend those seeking to take photos of the phenomenon use a tripod.

More than 400,000 people worked on Nasa’s Apollo 11 mission, which launched on July 16, 1969, and put the first humans on the moon four days later.—AFP