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Lunar Eclipse of November 8: what is it and how to see it?

A total lunar eclipse

© Dominique Dierick

The last total lunar eclipse took place on May 16, 2022, offering a nice spectacle to night owls or very early risers everywhere in metropolitan France. If you missed it and want to take advantage of the catch-up session which will take place this Tuesday, November 8, 2022, you will have to buy a plane ticket very quickly…

Where will the eclipse be visible?

Indeed, this eclipse will not be visible in mainland France this time, since the Moon will be lying in France when it enters the penumbra, and will only appear there once the event is over. To be able to observe it, you will have to be in North America, Asia, Australia or the Pacific, says NASA on his site.

imcce map eclipse visibility

The eclipse visibility map

© IMCE

It will therefore be visible to our friends in New Caledonia and French Polynesia. In addition, “the penumbra phase and the entry into the shadow will (also) be visible from the West Indies and Guyana before the Moon sets”indicates the Institute of Celestial Mechanics and Ephemeris Calculation (IMCCE) of the Paris Observatory.

When will the eclipse be visible?

An eclipse is divided into several phases. From the beginning of the penumbra to the end of the eclipse, that of this November 8 will last 5 h 53 min and 55 s with a phase of totality, the period when the shadow of the Earth completely covers our satellite, from 1 h 25 min 01 s. The Moon will enter the penumbra at 8 h 02 min 19 s UTC (add one hour to have French time) and will come out at 13 h 56 min 13 s UTC. The phase of totality will begin at 10:16:41 UTC and the eclipse will peak at 10:59:13.

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The IMCCE has produced a nice summary table of the temporality of the event that we invite you to find below:

eclipse temporality chart

The eclipse temporality chart

© IMCE

By the way, what is a lunar eclipse?

A lunar eclipse does not work at all the same way as a solar eclipse like the one that took place on October 25th. Our star enters the penumbra when the Moon passes between it and our planet. In the case of a lunar eclipse, it is the Earth that is between the Sun and the Moon and it is the shadow of our planet that obscures our satellite.

NASA eclipse phase

The different phases of a lunar eclipse

©NASA

These eclipses only occur during full moons and remain a rare phenomenon, as the Moon’s orbit is tilted relative to Earth. The shadow of the latter therefore passes most of the time above or below our satellite. Although there was a previous one in May, that of November 8 will be the last total lunar eclipse before 2025. It will therefore be necessary to be patient before being able to observe such a spectacle again.

Unlike solar eclipses, which are dangerous for your eyes, there is no need to use special glasses to observe a lunar eclipse. It is quite possible to enjoy the event with the naked eye. And if you want to photograph the event, here are some tips.

Immortalizing the Moon is similar to planetary imaging, which means two things: big zooms and very high definition sensors are your best friends, and you have to take very short exposures because our satellite remains very bright. . The opposite of photographing stars, the Milky Way and other deep sky objects (galaxies, nebulae, etc.) in short. As always when capturing the night sky, the use of a tripod is essential. Finally, do not hesitate to add a touch of creativity and fantasy to your photos by taking care to work on your first shots.

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