Monday, September 28

EVENTFUL: Total Lunar Eclipse

This weekend, you may have noticed a total lunar eclipse, or “Blood Moon,”  while looking out upon the evening sky. This rare phenomenon occurs as a result of light and shadows. As the Earth rotates around the sun, it becomes aligned between the sun and moon, casting its shadow onto the moon’s surface. The reddish color of the moon is created by the Earth’s shadow and the light from the sun that emanates past the outer edges of the Earth. This creates a sunrise-like effect that encompasses the entire Earth and causes the moon’s surface to appear red.

 Glastonbury, England courtesy of Getty Images
Geneva, Switzerland courtesy of the Associated Press

September’s eclipse was the fourth of a four-part series of total lunar eclipses, known as a “tetrad.” A very rare occurrence, only seven more tetrads are expected until the year 2100. September’s lunar eclipse was particularly special due to the lunar eclipse and “supermoon” occurring on the same night. A supermoon refers to the times when the moon is in the closest part of its orbit to the Earth, making the moon appear larger to us on the ground.

Watch NASA’s stream of the entire eclipse:

Contributed by Rebecca Stokes, Fairmont Private Schools

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