You may want to set your alarm so that you catch the moon’s disappearing act early on Tuesday morning—there won’t be another like it until March 14, 2025.
A total lunar eclipse will be visible throughout North America in the predawn hours—the farther West you are, the better your chances of seeing it. It will also be visible from Asia, Australia, and the rest of the Pacific just after sunset on Tuesday, November 8. The start of the eclipse will begin just after 3 a.m. ET, according to NASA. As Earth passes directly between the moon and the sun, the moon will enter totality at 5:16 a.m. ET, and it will last until 6:41 a.m. ET.
Why will the moon look red?
Known as a “blood moon,” this eclipse will appear a reddish-orange. The experts at NASA explain that the “same phenomenon that makes our sky blue and our sunsets red causes the moon to turn red during a lunar eclipse.” When the moon is fully in the Earth’s shadow, a little light from sunrises and sunsets falls on the moon, painting it red.
“It’s as if all the world’s sunrises and sunsets are projected onto the Moon,” NASA states.
The more dust in the Earth’s atmosphere during an eclipse, the darker the red hue becomes.
How to best see the eclipse
At the peak of the eclipse, the moon will be 242,740 miles from Earth, according to NASA scientists. While it will be possible to see the eclipse with your naked eye, binoculars and telescopes can help enhance the viewing. It’s also important to be somewhere where the skies are clear of clouds and light pollution, which can obstruct your view of the night sky.
Where won’t the lunar eclipse be visible?
Weather permitting, South America will get a glimpse of Tuesday’s lunar eclipse. However, Africa, the Middle East, and most of Europe are striking out altogether. But those who aren’t in the path of totality can watch one of the live streams of the lunar show, put on by the Griffith Observatory in Los Angeles and the Italian-based Virtual Telescope Project. You can also visit NASA’s Dial-a-Moon for photos of the event.
When will the next lunar eclipse take place?
Though this is the second total lunar eclipse this year (the first was in May), there won’t be another total lunar eclipse until March 14, 2025—that’s the next time the sun, Earth, and moon align so the Earth can cast a complete shadow over the moon. In the meantime, there will be some partial lunar eclipses (when only part of the moon enters Earth’s shadow, so it looks like a “bite” has been taken out of the moon), including the next one, on October 28, 2023.