Blood moon makes its last appearance for the next three years

Katherine Anderson, Features Editor

242,740 miles away, the Moon, at the peak of its eclipse, appeared a reddish-orange color. The last total eclipse for the next three years took place November 8 and is known as a blood moon, a product of the light of Earth’s sunsets and sunrises. 

A lunar eclipse is caused when the Earth passes directly between the Moon and Sun, with the Sun casting Earth’s reddish shadow onto the Moon. In order for this to take place, the Earth has to be physically between the Sun and Moon with all three, lying on the same plane of orbit. It can only happen during a Full Moon. A Blood Moon happens when Earth’s moon is in a total lunar eclipse and a minute remainder of refracted sunlight passes through the Earth’s atmosphere and reaches the moon. The more cloudy or dusty the atmosphere is, the redder the Moon appears to be; the reddish hue is caused by the wide scattering of sunlight passing through more of the planet’s atmosphere.

The lunar eclipse was visible throughout North America in the early hours before dawn, with Asia, Australia, and the rest of the Pacific getting their glimpse of the eclipse after sunset. Unfortunately, Africa, the Middle East and most of Europe were not able to see the eclipse and will have to wait until 2025. 

The total eclipse lasted about an hour and a half, beginning at 5:16 a.m. Eastern Standard Time and ending at 6:14 a.m. Eastern Standard Time. This lunar eclipse is the second one this year; the first one took place in May.