Will be a total lunar eclipse this weekend

(ORDO NEWS) — The first eclipse season of 2022 will reach its climax this coming weekend with a beautiful total lunar eclipse taking place on Sunday night into Monday morning.

All of South America and most of North America will see the total eclipse, while in Alaska and western Canada the totality will come at moonrise, and in Western Europe – on the contrary, at moonset and closer to dawn.

Eclipses occur when the points of intersection of the Moon’s orbit with the ecliptic (the plane drawn by the Earth’s orbit) coincide with the Sun and the Earth, which is called syzygy. The Moon’s orbit is tilted slightly more than five degrees relative to the ecliptic – otherwise we would observe solar and lunar eclipses every synodic month (29.5 days).

When the points are near the Sun-Earth line, the eclipse season begins.

For example, the first season of 2022 was marked by a partial solar eclipse on April 30, followed by a lunar eclipse this coming weekend.

Earth’s dark inner umbral shadow is about three times the Moon’s diameter (1.5 degrees across) at the Moon’s mean distance from Earth. During an eclipse, one can see the curve of the spherical Earth’s shadow crossing the Moon without special equipment.

The shadows also have a thinner penumbral outer edge, within which the light source is partially visible. From the Earth’s surface of the Moon, you can see a partial solar eclipse during the penumbral phase and a total solar eclipse during the umbral phase.

Perhaps human eyes will be able to replicate this feat when the Artemis missions return crews to the lunar surface starting in the middle of the decade.

Don’t expect to see too much of a change in the Moon’s color on Sunday night until it dips into about half-shadow around 22:00 EDT (2:00 UT).

Then the moon will take on a light tea shade. Around 2:20 UT you will notice an occultation on the Moon’s eastern limb as it approaches the umbra and the partial stages begin.

Totality is key, and for this eclipse it will be 1 hour, 24 minutes and 53 seconds long. The fullness will last from 3:29 UT/11:29 PM EDT to 4:54 UT/12:54 PM EDT, making it the 5th longest lunar eclipse of the first quarter of the 21st century.

It’s not a “super bloody lunar eclipse…” although no doubt people will try to label it as such. In fact, the eclipse will occur one and a half days before the lunar perigee on May 17 at 15:24 UT, when the Moon will be at a distance of 360,300 kilometers.

A lunar eclipse is a beautiful majestic sight that requires no special optical equipment…although a small telescope or binoculars can certainly improve the view. Photographing a total lunar eclipse is also fairly easy, although you’ll need a focal length of at least 200mm – otherwise the Moon will appear as just a silvery white dot.

Also, be sure to shoot in manual mode and be prepared to slow down from 1/100 second during partial phases to a slow exposure of 1-4 inches during totality.

Locations where totality will be seen during moonrise and moonset also give photographers the opportunity to capture totality along with foreground objects.

Don’t forget to scout the shooting location in advance and plan for a significant distance between you and the selected object against the background of the Moon: to make a building or statue appear to you the size of the Moon, you will need a distance of up to a kilometer.

Don’t miss the first total lunar eclipse of 2022!

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