Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Winter solstice lunar eclipse of 2010

This eclipse was notable because it took place just hours before the December solstice, which marks the beginning of northern winter and southern summer. The last Dec. 21 total lunar eclipse occurred in the year 1638. The next winter solstice eclipse is due in 2094.  Learn more on Alan Boyle's Cosmic Log.

Here's my feeble attempt at astro-photography. I had a hard time getting focused pictures even on a tripod and, man, was it nippy out!

I included this photo because it look more like what the naked eyeball saw than the more zoomed photos. This was taken at 2:52 EST, shortly after totality. It is still lighter on one side, but is totally in the Earth's shadow.

This was taken prior to midnight on 12/20/2010.

Taken at 1:57 EST on 12/21/2010. I just noticed there are lots of 1's and 2's in this date.

Taken at 2:20 EST

Taken at 2:22 EST

Taken at 2:34 EST. The photo doesn't show how bright the remaining sliver looked like.

This was taken at 2:50 EST shortly after totality. The full eclipse was supposed to begin at 2:41 EST. I guess the exact time varied depending on where in the time zone you were. There's more refraction on the trailing edge, but we weren't staying up for the center of the full eclipse!