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How to view the total lunar eclipse this weekend

The super flower blood moon occurs Sunday night.

ATLANTA — Look to the skies this weekend! The first of two total lunar eclipses visible from the United States in 2022 will occur on Sunday night.  

This eclipse will be unique because it occurs while the moon is orbiting closest to the earth - known as a "supermoon." 

This moon will be a "super flower blood moon."  May's full moon is known as the "flower moon" because of the spring blooms that begin appearing around this time.  "Blood moon" comes from the red hue on the moon when it's fully eclipsed.

Earth passes directly between the sun and the moon during a total lunar eclipse.  This casts the earth's shadow onto the moon's surface and makes the moon appear red.

Credit: Melissa Nord

Unlike a solar eclipse, lunar eclipses are visible to the naked eye.  A telescope or binoculars would enhance viewing.

Timing

The partial lunar eclipse begins at 10:27 PM EDT when the edge of the penumbra - Earth's partial shadow - first moves over the moon.

Once the shadow - umbra - fully covers the moon, the moon will appear red during the total eclipse.  Totality begins at 11:29 PM EDT and ends at 12:53 AM EDT.  The peak eclipse will be at 12:11 AM EDT.

Credit: WXIA

The color and vibrancy of a total lunar eclipse can vary.  Volcanic eruptions and the presence of aerosols have been known to reduce the vibrancy of lunar eclipses.


Forecast


Unfortunately, we will have to battle some cloud cover and spotty drizzle to view the lunar eclipse.  The good news is that the current forecast only calls for partly cloudy skies, allowing for gaps in the cloud cover for better viewing.

Temperatures will be mild and humidity high in North Georgia.  We'll be in the mid-70s when the partial lunar eclipse begins and in the upper 60s when the event ends.

Credit: WXIA

The eclipse will be visible from anywhere in the lower 48.  If you can't catch this lunar eclipse, 2022's second total eclipse will be early in the morning on November 8.