'Impossible' Selenelion Eclipse Happens Tomorrow

Total lunar eclipse will coincide with rising sun
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Oct 7, 2014 4:49 AM CDT
Updated Oct 7, 2014 7:30 AM CDT
'Impossible' Selenelion Eclipse Happens Tomorrow
The moon turns an orange hue during a total lunar eclipse in the sky above Phoenix on April 15, 2014.   (AP Photo/Ross D. Franklin, File)

Early risers east of the Mississippi tomorrow might be able to see something that should be impossible under the rules of celestial geometry: a rare "selenelion" eclipse in which a total eclipse of the moon can be seen at the same time as the rising sun, Space.com reports. The sun and moon will be exactly 180 degrees apart in the sky during the lunar eclipse, but they will both be briefly visible at the same time because of a trick of the light in which refraction lifts their images above the horizon, reports LiveScience, which has some tips for viewing the eclipse during a two- to nine-minute early morning window.

But while only those with a good view of both the eastern and western horizons will be able to witness the selenelion, the second "blood moon" of the year will have a reddish sheen visible to many. "When the moon sets over the east coast of America, in places like New York, the moon will be in mid-eclipse and the sun will be rising, so there will be some dramatic photographs of a mid-eclipse red moon," an astronomer tells the Independent. "North Carolina, Delaware, and Philadelphia should get some great views of the moon setting and the sun rising. It's definitely worth getting up a bit earlier to catch a dramatic setting of the moon." (Into outer space? Check out one professor's proof that black holes can't exist.)

We use cookies. By Clicking "OK" or any content on this site, you agree to allow cookies to be placed. Read more in our privacy policy.
Get the news faster.
Tap to install our app.
Install the Newser News app
in two easy steps:
1. Tap in your navigation bar.
2. Tap to Add to Home Screen.