Are Lunar Eclipses Dangerous? We answer your questions about the ‘Super Blood Flower Moon’ this weekend

A long total lunar eclipse, also known as a “Blood Moon”, will be visible in North America on Sunday, May 15, 2022 and Monday 16, 2022.

This is everything you wanted to know about this important celestial event.

What is a “Blood Moon” eclipse?

It’s total lunar eclipse. This occurs when the Earth is exactly between the Sun, and the full Moon. The Moon’s shadow moves into Earth’s shadow, and the Moon turns a reddish hue for a period of time.

Are ‘Blood Moon’ lunar eclipses dangerous?

Is it safe for me to view a lunar eclipse? It is completely safe. Eclipse glasses can only be used for solar eclipses. All phases of a lunar Eclipse are visible with naked eyes and through unfiltered telescopes, according to NASA A total lunar eclipse can be viewed with the naked eye or through a telescope. A regular full Moon can emit a lot more glare, making it even safer. A “Blood Moon” will appear dark reddish on May 15/16, 2022.

Why is there a “Blood Moon?”

A total lunar eclipse does not allow direct sunlight to reach the lunar surface. Only the Earth’s atmosphere filters any light that reaches the Moon’s surface.

All of Earth’s sunsets and sunrises are projected onto the moon at once. The Moon will appear orangey-reddish for 1 hour and 24 minutes, just like the sunset on Earth.

What is a Blood Moon’ red

A completely eclipsed Moon actually has a reddish or orange color and/or copper color, not red!

The Moon will travel through Earth’s shadow for a long time before reaching the lunar surface. This is because the Moon will be filtered through Earth’s atmosphere first. It is exactly the same physics as a sunrise or sunset. The Sun’s short-wavelength blue light hits Earth’s molecules and scatters. Longer-wavelength orange and red light travels straight through the atmosphere, striking fewer molecules. The dominant color of the Moon’s light for this short period will be red…ish.

In reality, a lunar eclipse is like thousands upon thousands of sunsets and sunrises projected onto the lunar surface.

Is this the ‘Blood Moon,’ also a supermoon

It is technically true, but it doesn’t matter how people experience it. Its orbit around Earth is egg-shaped. This means that the Moon will reach a point in any given month where it is farthest from Earth (apogee), and then closest to Earth (perigee). A full Moon that falls near the date or on top of it can be called “supermoon”. According to Fred Espenak’s definition, it must be “within 90%” of Earth’s closest approach in any given orbit.

The full Flower Moon will be 362,127km (3225,015 miles) from Earth on May 16, 2022. It’s technically considered a supermoon, though the full Moons in June, July, and August 2022 are closer. The closest supermoon to 2022 will be the July 13 supermoon.

What is the ‘Super Flower Blood Moon Eclipse’?

While the “super” is described above, the “flower” comes in the fact that the full Moon of May is sometimes called “Flower Moon”.

What happens during the ‘Blood Moon” eclipse?

The total lunar eclipse is actually three eclipses in one, and it takes place in five acts. The full Moon’s journey begins when it enters Earth’s shadow, its penumbra (a penumbral moon eclipse). The full Moon then enters Earth’s inner shadow, its umbra. As it does this it turns red (a partial moon eclipse). The Moon will turn 100% red once it is all within the umbra which’s totality.

After 84 minutes of spectacular totality, the whole event will reverse. The Moon will exit the umbra and then the penumbbra.

What’s an “eclipse” season?

The Moon aligns perfectly with the ecliptic every 173 days for between 31-37 days. This is the apparent path of Sun through the daytime sky and Earth’s orbit around it. This results in a brief season, during which sometimes two- or three–solar eclipses and lunar eclipses may occur every two weeks.

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