On July 28th, a total eclipse of the Moon will be visible from Australia. This article deals specifically with eclipse circumstances in Canberra.
The shadow contacts of a lunar eclipse, start of partial and total
eclipse are the same anywhere in the world that the Moon can be
seen. Only the time zones need to be converted. Times in this
article are given in EST, UT+10hrs. The altitude and azimuth,
times of twilight, sunrise and moonset are specific to particular
locations. The circumstances in Sydney will only differ by a few
minutes from those presented in this diagram. Brisbane and
Melbourne will be a bit more different.
International documentation will refer to this eclipse as occurring on
the 27th July. All international documentation quotes date and
time expressed as UT (universal time) or TD (Dynamical time).
While the eclipse does occur on the 27th July Universal Time, in
Australlia, the eclipse definitely occurs in the dawn hours of July
The partial eclipse takes place during the final hour of total darkness
starting at 4:24am and ending at 5:30am. The total eclipse
begins at the beginning of astronomical twilight*, continuing through
nautical twilight and through civil twilight. For an explanation
of the meanings of civil, nautical and astronomical twilight this
website has an excellent explanation (http://aa.usno.navy.mil/faq/docs/RST_defs.php).
I have coloured the diagram below with a representation of the colour
and shade of the sky during these times. The total eclipse will be very
distinct against a dark sky at the start of totality and is a beautiful
sight through nautical twilight against a deep blue sky but will
rapidly become quite difficult to see during Civil twilight and at the
end of totality as the Sun is rising and the Moon setting. From
Canberra this will be seen setting over the Brindabella Mountains and
will be a beautiful sight. An eclipse of very similar
circumstances was visible from Canberra on June 16, 2011. On that
occasion, totality started 30 minutes later and finished 30
minutes after sunrise and moonset. Unfortunately I don't have any
pictures to show, I was suffering a bad bout of pneumonia and only
managed a peek through the window of a heated bedroom that
morning. Nonetheless, it was a glorious sight.