The last total lunar eclipse of 2022 will turn the moon blood-red on Tuesday.
Dubbed the Beaver Blood Moon lunar eclipse since it occurs during November’s Full Beaver Blood Moon, the celestial spectacle will be visible across North America, the Pacific, Australia and Asia – including the Middle East, according to news media Space.com.
The full moon will pass through the Earth’s shadow during the eclipse as it moves behind the planet with respect to the sun, giving it a unique blood-red color in the process.
How to watch the Beaver Blood moon total lunar eclipse online
Tuesday’s celestial event will begin at around 2:16 p.m. and run until 3:41 p.m UAE time, lasting almost an hour and a half.
In Asia, Australia and the Pacific the blood moon will be observed at sunset, while in North America will witness it before sunrise.
However, those in the Middle East and most of Europe will need to wait until the next lunar eclipse in 2025 to view it with the naked eye rather than on internet livestreams.
Space.com will host a free livestream, courtesy of several webcasts from observatories across the US.
People can also view it on livestreams hosted by the Italian Virtual Telescope Project, the Griffith Observatory in Los Angeles, and NASA.
Although observers will not need any special equipment to be able to watch the eclipse, binoculars and telescopes can enhance the view and the red color. NASA suggests that a “dark environment away from bright lights makes for the best viewing conditions.”
What’s special about Tuesday’s lunar eclipse?
The first total lunar eclipse of 2022 took place in May, and Tuesday’s celestial spectacle is expected to be the last one until March 14, 2025. NASA noted, however, that partial and penumbral lunar eclipses will be observed until then.
“A lunar eclipse occurs when the Sun, Earth, and Moon align so that the Moon passes into Earth’s shadow. In a total lunar eclipse, the entire Moon falls within the darkest part of Earth’s shadow, called the umbra. When the Moon is within the umbra, it will turn a reddish hue. Lunar eclipses are sometimes called “Blood Moons” because of this phenomenon,” according to a NASA report.
Totality is the stage of the eclipse where the moon is entirely in the Earth’s shadow. This will be visible across North and Central America and in Ecuador, Colombia and western portions of Venezuela and Peru.
Observers in Alaska and Hawaii will have the opportunity to see every stage of the total lunar eclipse.
Why does the moon turn red during a total lunar eclipse?
The same phenomenon that makes skies blue and sunsets red causes the moon to turn red during a lunar eclipse, NASA said.
Since light travels in waves, some colors can scatter more easily by particles in the Earth’s atmosphere and have a longer wavelength. Unlike other colors, red light “travels more directly through our atmosphere,” NASA explained.
“When the Sun is overhead, we see blue light throughout the sky. But when the Sun is setting, sunlight must pass through more atmosphere and travel farther before reaching our eyes. The blue light from the Sun scatters away, and longer-wavelength red, orange, and yellow light pass through,” NASA reported.
“During a lunar eclipse, the Moon turns red because the only sunlight reaching the Moon passes through Earth’s atmosphere. The more dust or clouds in Earth’s atmosphere during the eclipse, the redder the Moon will appear. It’s as if all the world’s sunrises and sunsets are projected onto the Moon,” the report added.
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