A rare ‘blood moon’ lunar eclipse will dominate the sky tonight

A lunar eclipse occurs when the Earth is positioned between the sun and moon, casting a shadow across the surface of the moon. It happens only when there is a full moon.

There are three types of lunar eclipses; total lunar eclipse, partial lunar eclipse and penumbral lunar eclipse. While the latter two occur more often, total lunar eclipses don't happen as frequently.

There was one total lunar eclipse earlier this year on May 15-16, and one more occurring as the second and final one this year – but the next one won't happen until 2025.

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Here's what you need to know about when and where to spot the lunar eclipse.

When is the total lunar eclipse?

The second and total final lunar eclipse of 2022 will occur on Tuesday, November 8.

Exactly when the eclipse will be visible depends on your location, however according to TimeandDate.com, the partial eclipse phase of the eclipse is set to take place at 5.09 am EST (9.09am GMT).

The red-hued Blood Moon peak will be visible at 6.19am EST (10.16am GMT), with the event ending at 07.41am EST (11.41am GMT).

The penumbral eclipse, when faint outer part of Earth's shadow is cast across the lunar surface, will happen an hour before and end an hour after the partial eclipse, which is when only part of the moon is covered by the Earth's shadow.

How to spot the lunar eclipse?

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The total lunar eclipse on November 8 will be visible in parts of Asia, Australia, North America, parts of northern and eastern Europe, most of South America as well as Pacific, Atlantic, Indian Ocean, Arctic and Antarctica.

To find out if you can see the total lunar eclipse from your location, you can check this interactive map.

If your area is cloudy and hampering your visibility of the phenomena, don't worry. You can still watch the eclipse on Space.com for free, via several webcasts from observatories across the United States starting at 3am EST (8am GMT).

When is the next total lunar eclipse?

After the total lunar eclipse on November 8, we will not experience another total lunar eclipse until March 14, 2025.

What is a blood moon and why is it red?

A blood moon occurs when the Earth's moon is in a total lunar eclipse.

During a full eclipse while the moon is fully in the Earth's shadow, a little bit of light from the Earth's sunrise and sunsets falls on the surface of the moon.

Since the light waves from the sun are stretched over the moon, it gives the lunar surface a red tinge.

How red the moon looks depends on how much pollution, cloud cover or debris there is in the atmosphere.

For example if an eclipse happens right after an volcanic eruption, the particles in the atmosphere makes the moon look much more red.


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