A total lunar eclipse concomitant with the Winter Solstice happens once in 632 years, so yes, the media has all reasons to talk about the event that will take place in a few hours from now on. And if you try to search on Google News alone now for information on the Winter Solstice and the total lunar eclipse that will grace the sky tonight, you’ll fully understand the meaning of the phrase “information overload.” I’ll be brief.
The 2010 winter solstice will occur on December 21, at 23:38 pm UTC. A few hours earlier, however, the first total lunar eclipse in two years will grace the sky, and NASA experts made this the event of the month, with lunar experts from NASA’s Marshall Space Flight Center planning to “Stay up all night” hosting two live Web chats. And for those who are not fortunate enough to have clear skies where they are, NASA will provide a live video feed of the lunar eclipse streamed from the camera mounted at NASA’s Marshall Space Flight Center in Huntsville, Ala.
You are also invited , join the conversation on Twitter by including #eclipse and @NASAJPL in your lunar eclipse tweets. Or, if you like photography, NASA’s flickr group dedicated to the total lunar eclipse tonight is open, and one lucky photographer who shares images of tonight’s eclipse will have his or her work featured as official JPL wallpaper at http://www.jpl.nasa.gov/wallpaper.
These are just some of the ways NASA engages audiences today – a PR opportunity that will attract not only supporter, but media attention as well. After all, NASA is the main source for information on the event of the night. It’s probably interesting to know, for our readers in Europe, that the eclipse will be visible in Western Europe only in the beginning stages of the eclipse before moonset. If you want to see it all, just watch NASA’s live eclipse feed.