Total Lunar Eclipse Coincides with Winter Solstice on Dec. 21, 2010

Okay Night Owls, this ones’s  for you!, On Tuesday am EST between 2:41 am to 3:17 am EST  ( or 17 minutes past midnight PST)  is the best time to get outdoors dressed in your woolens for a picture of the Lunar Eclipse.

This lunar eclipse falls on the date of the northern winter solstice.

“This is very rare “, according to Dr. Tony Phillips of science . nasa.gov.

However, Total lunar eclipses in northern winter are fairly common. There have been three of them in the past ten years alone.

The eclipse begins on Tuesday morning, Dec. 21st, at 1:33 am EST (Monday, Dec. 20th, at 10:33 pm PST)
Eclipse Photos: Upload your photos at weather.com/iwitness!

If you’re planning to dash out for only one quick look -Ã?  it is December, after all -Ã?­ choose this moment: 3:17 am EST (17 minutes past midnight PST). That’s when the Moon will be in deepest shadow, displaying the most fantastic shades of coppery red.
“Why red?

A quick trip to the Moon provides the answer: Imagine yourself standing on a dusty lunar plain looking up at the sky.

Overhead hangs Earth, nightside down, completely hiding the sun behind it. The eclipse is underway.

You might expect Earth seen in this way to be utterly dark, but it’s not. The rim of the planet is on fire! As you scan your eye around Earth’s circumference, you’re seeing every sunrise and every sunset in the world, all of them, all at once.

This incredible light beams into the heart of Earth’s shadow, filling it with a coppery glow and transforming the Moon into a great red orb. ”

Total lunar eclipse visible to all of the United States

How rare is that?
 

Total lunar eclipses in northern winter are fairly common.

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