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Lunar Eclipse Photograph

Fountain City, Knoxville, TN

Wednesday, February 20, 2008
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Just in case you didn't happen to notice... there was a total lunar eclipse tonight. We went out for a few minutes around 11pm to see the shadow as it started moving off of the Moon. 

It's a little too cold to stay out for long tonight, but it is kind of cool to see so I dug out an old composite photo that I took a few years ago.

The first shot was taken during totality while the Moon was completely covered by the Earth's shadow. Because the Earth is blocking most of the sunlight, shorter wavelengths of light are scattered. Only the longer orange and red wavelengths can bend around and still reach the Moon which is why you get an orange color cast.

Once the shadow has moved off some, the Moon is much brighter and looks a lot like most other nights. However, the normal phases of the moon are not caused by the Earth's shadow, and that is your random fact for the day.

If you missed out on seeing the eclipse then you'll have to wait a while. While it is possible to have up to 3 total lunar eclipses in one year, we won't have another one until December 2010.
Lunar Eclipse Photograph

2/21/2008 10:00:42 AM
As soon as we realized the eclipse was happening, I ran downstairs to get my 70-200 and take a few pictures! We got a good one like the middle one, but didn't quite get one when it was completely orange :-( One day I'd love to upgrade my telescope into one made for digital cameras and go crazy with it.
2/21/2008 4:11:09 PM
Ahhh! Cool pic. I should take it into my astronomy class! My teacher would go crazy over that!
Andrew
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