Monday, December 20, 2010

The Eclipse

Boot Key Harbor, Marathon, FL
34 42.54 N 081 05.58 W


After midnight tonight, we can watch the lunar eclipse.  It is said to be special, or at least unusual, in that it occurs on the winter solstice.


It's rather grey, overcast and chilly today, which doesn't bode well .  However, if the conditions improve, we may be able to get up to see, or even better to sleep out on deck.


One thing I never considered before is what the eclipse might look like from a vantage point not on the earth's surface.   I found the following on space.com.


"How the moon will appear during totality is not known. Some eclipses are such a dark gray-black that the moon nearly vanishes from view. During other eclipses it can glow a bright orange.


The reason the moon can be seen at all when totally eclipsed is that sunlight is scattered and refracted around the edge of the Earth by our atmosphere. To an astronaut standing on the moon during totality, the sun would be hidden behind a dark Earth outlined by a brilliant red ring consisting of all the world's sunrises and sunsets."

WOW! That's hard to imagine.  Seeing all the world's sunrises and sunsets at the same time.  As far as I know, not even our moon astronauts have managed to be in the right place at the right time to see that sight.  Billionaire photographers of the world ALERT.  If you want the shot to top all other photo shots in history, I have the target for you.

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