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What You Need to Know About the November 2022 Lunar Eclipse

The Moon moves right to left, passing through the penumbra and umbra, leaving in its wake an eclipse diagram with the times at various stages of the eclipse. Times are shown in Coordinated Universal Time (UTC). Credit: NASA's Scientific Visualization Studio/Ernie Wright

What’s special about the November 2022 lunar eclipse?

The last total lunar eclipse for three years occurs on November 8, 2022, with the next occurring on March 14, 2025 — though we will continue to see partial and penumbral lunar eclipses during that time.

A lunar eclipse occurs when the Sun, Earth, and Moon align so that the Moon passes into Earth’s shadow. In a total lunar eclipse, the entire Moon falls within the darkest part of Earth’s shadow, called the umbra. When the Moon is within the umbra, it will turn a reddish hue. Lunar eclipses are sometimes called “Blood Moons” because of this phenomenon.

How can I observe the eclipse?

You don’t need any special equipment to observe a lunar eclipse, although binoculars or a telescope will enhance the view and the red color. A dark environment away from bright lights makes for the best viewing conditions.

Totality ― the stage of the eclipse where the Moon is entirely in Earth’s shadow ― will be visible across North and Central America and in Ecuador, Colombia, and western portions of Venezuela and Peru. In Puerto Rico, the Moon sets just after totality begins. The eclipse is also visible in Asia, Australia, and New Zealand. Viewers in Alaska and Hawaii will have the opportunity to see every stage of the eclipse.

November 8 2022 Lunar Eclipse Visibility Map
A map showing where the November 8, 2022 lunar eclipse is visible. Contours mark the edge of the visibility region at eclipse contact times. The map is centered on 168°57'W, the sublunar longitude at mid-eclipse.

You can also visit NASA’s Dial-a-Moon for a visualization of the eclipse.

What can I expect to observe?

What’s Happening?
3:02 a.m.
12:02 a.m.
Penumbral eclipse begins
The Moon enters the Earth’s penumbra, the outer part of the shadow. The Moon begins to dim, but the effect is quite subtle.
4:09 a.m.
1:09 a.m.
Partial eclipse begins
The Moon begins to enter Earth’s umbra and the partial eclipse begins. To the naked eye, as the Moon moves into the umbra, it looks like a bite is being taken out of the lunar disk. The part of the Moon inside the umbra will appear very dark.
5:17 a.m.
2:17 a.m.
Totality begins
The entire Moon is now in the Earth’s umbra. The Moon will turn a coppery-red. Try binoculars or a telescope for a better view. If you want to take a photo, use a camera on a tripod with exposures of at least several seconds.
6:42 a.m.
3:42 a.m.
Totality ends
As the Moon exits Earth’s umbra, the red color fades. It will look as if a bite is being taken out of the opposite side of the lunar disk as before.
--- Moon has set
4:49 a.m.
Partial eclipse ends
The whole Moon is in Earth’s penumbra, but again, the dimming is subtle.
--- Moon has set
5:50 a.m.
Penumbral eclipse ends
The eclipse is over.

What else can I see tonight?

The Moon will be in the constellation Aries. NASA provides a monthly skywatching tips series that will highlight additional targets to focus on in between monitoring the eclipse.

Why does the Moon turn red during a lunar eclipse?

The same phenomenon that makes our sky blue and our sunsets red causes the Moon to turn red during a lunar eclipse. 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.

Graphic of the Earth and Moon. Sunlight passing above and below the Earth’s atmosphere is broken up into a rainbow spectrum, with the red parts of the spectrum falling on the Moon.
During a lunar eclipse, Earth’s atmosphere scatters sunlight. The blue light from the Sun scatters away, and longer-wavelength red, orange, and yellow light pass through, turning our Moon red. *This image is not to scale.


Last Updated
Feb 05, 2024
NASA Science Editorial Team
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