Solar eclipses on the Moon

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Painting by Lucien Rudaux, showing what a lunar eclipse might look like when viewed from the surface of the moon.[1]
A simulation of the start and end of the August 28, 2007 lunar eclipse, seen from the center of the moon.[2]

Solar eclipses on the Moon are caused when the Earth passes in front of the Sun, blocking its light. Viewers on Earth will see a lunar eclipse.

The solar eclipses are only seen in the Nearside portion and smaller parts of the Farside where the Earth is seen during librations, making up the visible portion of the Moon and eclipses there are seen during the lunar sunrise and sunset as well as furthermost areas of the Nearside but mainly not in the polar areas of the Moon. As the Moon revolves around the Earth, the Earth rotates nearly 24 hours, but its position at the sky is only in one position as it never changes as it does with some other moons (or satellites) in other planets or dwarf planets and a few asteroids even inside the solar system but are very rare in the outer part of the solar system.

The next solar eclipse on the Moon will be a total eclipse on January 31, 2018 with the whole Nearside and the tiny surroundings of the Farside seeing totality.

Length[edit]

Unlike the Earth which sees its eclipse for up to 2 1/2 hours the longest in one area as the Moon's shadow touches for over 5 1/2 hours the longest. Some of the eclipses on the Moon lasts for about 5 hours in one area the longest as the Earth's shadow touches for over 6 hours the longest.

Some eclipses are longer when the Earth is slightly closer (on Earth, the Moon is seen with its apparent diameter is larger than the sun's), some eclipses are shorter when the Earth is slightly further (on Earth, the Moon is seen with its apparent diameter is smaller than the sun's).

Unlike the Earth where its eclipses starts and ends at a different place. All of its solar eclipses begins in the westernmost parts of the Nearside and ends in the easternmost parts of the Nearside.

Solar eclipses starting near and within the polar areas has only partial eclipses while solar eclipses starting at or within the equator has only total eclipses.

Penumbral shadow[edit]

In its eclipses, the penumbral shadow does not appear until it is around 25–30% obscuration, it gets slightly darker when the Earth blocks the sunlight until it reaches totality in some eclipses.

In some eclipses, its penumbral shadow covers the whole surface whereas the center of the Earth's shadow missed a portion of the moon while every part of the Nearside sees a partial eclipse, they are very rare. The last century that not all parts of the Nearside and the surrounding parts of the Farside saw only as partial was the 18th century. On Earth, they are seen as a Total penumbral eclipse.

It is a narrow path for the moon to pass within the penumbra and outside the umbra. It can happen on the Earth's northern or southern penumbral edges.

These eclipses can last up to about over 4 1/2 hours without having any part of the moon (notably especially at its poles) having totality.

Center of the Earth's shadow[edit]

Unlike the Earth which receives the smallest portion being inside the center of the moon's shadow during total solar eclipses. During its total eclipses on the Moon, the center of the Earth's shadow covers the whole Nearside part of the Moon and lasts much longer than on Earth with up to around 1.8 hours.[3] Some total-partial eclipses have a most, half or a part of the Moon being in the center of the Earth's shadow.

Unlike the Earth which it umbral shadow shows black, as the Moon has no atmosphere, the surface appears not just black but red and brown (according to the Danjon scale) because the only sunlight available is refracted through the Earth's atmosphere on the edges of the earth forming an atmospheric ring as it is shown in the sky in a painting by Lucien Rudaux.[1] The red color were caused by organic debris, one example huge forest fires that occurred before the early 20th century, the rarest are volcanic clouds.

Partial eclipses[edit]

On the Moon, when there is a partial eclipse, one example is when half of the Sun is blocked (north or south), a part of the moon has a partial eclipse (north or south). In some partial eclipses when the center of the Earth's shadow misses the moon, one example is one hemisphere has a partial eclipse and the other does not. In some eclipses when the center of the Earth's shadow covers a part or most, one part has a total eclipse and one part has a partial eclipse. Partial/total eclipses together with simiply partial last for up to about 6 hours without having totality in all parts of the Nearside and a very small part of the Farside next to the Nearside. Partial/total eclipses alone in between partial lasts for up to about 3 1/2 hours.[3]

At its edges of the Nearside and its small surroundings[edit]

At the edges of the Nearside and a small surrounding part in the Farside where the Earth is mostly, half or partly seen, in the west, some solar eclipses begins at sunrise and the sun is seen after sunrise, in some eclipses the sun is half seen, in some eclipses, it is partly eclipsed, in the east some solar eclipses ends at sunset and the sun is seen before sunset, in some eclipses, the sun is half seen. It also occur in several polar areas. In that part of the Moon, the Earth is seen in the upper parts of the crater, its hills and its mountains and a few areas such as lunar seas (plains), in some parts, it can be seen through a deep crater hollow while most or much of the lower parts around ground level and in some parts, the middle parts, the Earth is never visible and its eclipses are never seen as the crater and its mountains including crater ones blocks the view. In areas around 7–8 degrees near the Farside, a part of the Earth's view is blocked, in some eclipses, it begins not long after sunrise in the west and beings not long before sunset in the east. At that location, they are seen in higher parts and most of the middle portions.

At the furthermost areas of the Farside within the Nearside, a part of the Earth is seen but only in the highest portions.

Exception on one part of the Moon[edit]

Much of the Farside portion (about 91%) are free of solar eclipses as the Earth is never seen there.

Also it is not seen in the fringes of the Nearside, within the Farside, it is not seen in the lower and most of the middle parts, around it, it is not seen in the lower parts. Also in that location and around it, the eclipses are never seen in most crater hollows, some of it the lowest part of some crater hollows. Also eclipses are never seen in crater hollows in the polar regions where the sun never shines, between the 75th and the 80th parallel north or south, the eclipses are never seen in most crater hollows such as the middle and notably the lowest portions.

Saros series[edit]

The Solar Saros series of the Moon is the equivalent to the Lunar Saros series of the Earth.

List of solar eclipses on the Moon[edit]

Partial eclipses[edit]

Partial/total eclipses[edit]

Total eclipses[edit]

In popular culture[edit]

In a package of Wills's Cigarettes, one of the tobacco cards first issued in 1928 for a few years displays the solar eclipse on the Moon showing the atmospheric ring.[4] This is considered the first depiction of a solar eclipse as seen on the Moon.

See also[edit]

  • Planetary eclipse (not common to be called as an Earthly eclipse) – the opposite of the solar eclipses on the Moon where the shadows of the Moon block the view of the Sun on Earth making it a planetary eclipse, on Earth, they are Solar eclipses
  • Lunar eclipse – What the Earth sees when there is a solar eclipse on the Moon
  • Danjon scale – varying the different colors of the umbra during certain eclipses.

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b The moon's surface appears red because the only sunlight available is refracted through the Earth's atmosphere on the edges of the earth, as shown in the sky in this painting.
  2. ^ The Earth will be in new phase, completely dark, except for moonshine and sunlight refracted through the earth's atmosphere, visible as a ring of light.
  3. ^ a b Lunar eclipses
  4. ^ Wood, Chuck (June 30, 2004). "Tobacco Lunar Science". Lunar Photo of the Day. 

External links[edit]

Related articles[edit]

  • Wood, Chuck (June 30, 2004). "Tobacco Lunar Science". Lunar Photo of the Day.  - the first card displaying the solar eclipse on the Moon
  • Caes, Danny (January 17, 2010). "Eclipse from the Moon". Lunar Photo of the Day. Retrieved August 22, 2017.