(CNN) – During the full moon in May, stargazers will see red.
The moon will glow scarlet during this year’s first total lunar eclipse on Sunday — a stark contrast to its normally milky-white glow.
A partial solar eclipse begins at 8:27 p.m. MT on Sunday, and the total lunar eclipse begins at 9:29 p.m. MT, according to EarthSky. The total eclipse will end at 10:53 p.m. MT, and the partial eclipse will end at 11:55 p.m. MT, the website said.
A lunar eclipse occurs when the moon, earth, and sun fall into a line, with the moon passing through the earth’s shadow, according to NASA. When the moon passes through the darkest part of Earth’s shadow, the umbra, it’s called a total lunar eclipse, the space agency said.
When the sun’s rays reach Earth, much of the blue and green light is scattered while the orange and red colors remain visible, which is why the moon takes on a reddish hue and is often referred to as the “blood moon,” according to The Old Farmer’s Almanac.
Not everyone will be able to catch a glimpse of the total lunar eclipse because it has to be night to see it, said Noah Petro, head of NASA’s Planetary Geology, Geophysics and Geochemistry Laboratory.
People in South America and the eastern part of North America will have a great view of the lunar eclipse, he said. The total lunar eclipse will be visible across much of Africa, Europe, and South America, as well as most of North America.
About two lunar eclipses occur each year, and the next will be a total lunar eclipse in November, Petro said. Then there will be no more total lunar eclipse until March 2025, he added.
How to see the solar eclipse
According to Petro, it is perfectly safe to see a lunar eclipse with the naked eye.
“The great thing about lunar eclipses is that you don’t need any gear other than a passion and interest in being outside and a clear horizon,” Petro said.
For optimal viewing conditions, avoid bright lights and tall buildings that could obstruct your view, he said.
While the peak of the eclipse may be short-lived, the moon’s coppery tones will change throughout the night, according to Petro. These changes make it interesting to watch this celestial phenomenon throughout the eclipse rather than just at a specific moment, he said.
If it’s cloudy or you can’t see the lunar eclipse for other reasons, you can watch a live stream from NASA.
According to The Old Farmer’s Almanac, there will be seven more full moons in 2022:
- September 10: harvest moon
- 9th October: Hunter’s moon
These are the popular names associated with the monthly full moons, originating from Native American tribes. The names vary from tribe to tribe as a full moon had different meanings to the tribes from month to month or season to season.
lunar and solar eclipses
In addition to another total lunar eclipse in 2022, there will also be a partial solar eclipse, according to The Old Farmer’s Almanac.
Partial eclipses occur when the moon passes in front of the sun but blocks only part of its light. Be sure to wear proper eclipse glasses to see solar eclipses safely, as the sunlight can damage your eyes.
A partial solar eclipse on October 25 will be visible to people in Greenland, Iceland, Europe, Northeast Africa, the Middle East, western Asia, India, and western China. It will not be visible from North America.
After this weekend, the next total lunar eclipse will also be visible to those in Asia, Australia, the Pacific, and South and North America on November 8 between 1:01 a.m. and 6:58 a.m. MT – but the moon will set for those in the eastern regions of North America.
Check out the remaining nine showers that will peak in 2022:
- Southern Delta Aquariids: July 29-30
- Alpha Capricorns: July 30-31
- Southern Taurids: 4th to 5th November
- Northern Taurids: November 11-12
If you live in an urban area, you might want to drive somewhere that isn’t cluttered with city lights for the best view.
Find an open area with a wide view of the sky. Make sure you have a chair or blanket so you can look straight up. And give your eyes about 20 to 30 minutes — without looking at your phone or other electronic devices — to adjust to the darkness so the meteors are easier to spot.
The CNN Wire
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