In keeping with the general obsession at FourStar of matters relating to advancements in space exploration, our solar system and outer space, here is a treat I was lucky to catch on Sunday night (5/15/22)- A Red Moon Rising!

The red moon in this case was a lunar eclipse called a Super Flower Blood Moon.  A lunar eclipse is particularly fun and accessible because no special eye protection is needed to take it in, unlike a solar eclipse (when the Moon blocks the Sun), for which special glasses are needed to look directly at it.

So, what is a lunar eclipse?

A lunar eclipse occurs when the Sun, Earth, and Moon align so that the Moon passes into Earth’s shadow.  The Super Flower Blood Moon was a total lunar eclipse, a time when the entire moon falls within the darkest part of the shadow of the Earth.  The Moon turns red during a total lunar eclipse because the only sunlight reaching the Moon passes through Earth’s atmosphere and the longest-wavelength red light is what’s visible.  The number of clouds in the sky also has an effect- the more clouds in the area from which the lunar eclipse is visible, the more red the moon will appear.  Although total lunar eclipses aren’t necessarily rare, the last one happened about a year ago.  Don’t worry if you missed this one, there will be another total eclipse on the night of November 7th.

Enjoy this piece by NASA about the Moon in Motion, which explains lunar and solar eclipses. Enjoy also the image from NASA showing different lunar phases and the picture that I took from my phone while watching the eclipse on Sunday night!

Did you happen to catch the Super Flower Blood Moon?  Tell me your stories and Happy Stargazing!

~ Brian Kasal- The Leadership Matrix

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