The last blood moon lunar eclipse for three years is expected to hang in the sky on Election Day 2022 morning (November 8th). NASA announced on Wednesday (November 2nd) through its Twitter account that the blood moon eclipse is among the various activities that stargazers will see within the coming days. “There are plenty of reasons to watch the skies in November: a total lunar eclipse, the Leonid meteors, and chances to see Mars, Saturn, and the star Spica! Check out the best times to spot these celestial bodies.”
NASA further reports that the eclipse will be visible to those in North America, The Pacific region, Australia, and Eastern Asia. The space agency points out that when the moon is within the umbra, it will turn a reddish hue. These Lunar eclipses are sometimes consider “blood moons” because of this. This event will occur a little after 5 a.m.
“The same phenomenon that makes our sky blue and our sunsets red causes the Moon to turn red during a lunar eclipse,” NASA continued. “It’s called Rayleigh scattering. Light travels in waves, and different colors of light have different physical properties. Blue light has a shorter wavelength and is scattered more easily by particles in Earth’s atmosphere than red light, which has a longer wavelength.”
NASA reported that red light travels more directly through the atmosphere. “During a lunar eclipse, the Moon turns red. Because the only sunlight reaching the Moon passes through Earth’s atmosphere. The more dust or clouds in Earth’s atmosphere during the eclipse, the redder the Moon will appear. It’s as if all the world’s sunrises and sunsets are projected onto the Moon.”
Space.com also reports that an estimated 2.7 billion people will have an opportunity to see the Election Day 2022 blood moon on Tuesday.
The Blood Moon Is ’One of the Best’ Astronomical Events to Witness Without Equipment
According to AccuWeather Meteorologist and astronomy blogger Dave Samuel, the blood moon is going to be one of the best astronomic events to witness. “It’s one of best astronomical events to witness without any equipment,” Samuhel further explained. “And we know exactly when it’s going to happen.”
Caleb Scharf, Director of Astrobiology at Columbia University, offered an explanation about the color of the blood moon. “The red component of sunlight passing through Earth’s atmosphere is preferentially filtered,” Scharf shared. “And diverted into the Earth’s shadow where it illuminates the eclipsed moon, making it appear red or ‘blood’ color.”
However, according to Old Farmer’s Almanac, astronomy doesn’t use the blood moon nickname. “It’s more of a popular phrase,” the website explained. It went on to add, “Perhaps because it sounds so dramatic. It simply refers to a ‘total lunar eclipse.”