Galactic Eclipse

By: Babak A. Tafreshi


Region: Middle East

Site: Alborz Mountains - Iran

Spot: Firouzkooh

Date: 2011 June 15

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On 15 June 2011 the totally eclipsed Moon was very dark, with the Moon itself positioned on the sky toward the center of our Milky Way Galaxy. The red lunar disk lies in the constellation Ophiuchus near the border with Scorpius and Sagittarius. Many of notable deep sky objects in this part of the sky are captured here including several large emission nebulae with vivid red color. Click on the star-pattern icon above the image to see the photographer's close-up image of the eclipsed moon near the beautiful Snake dark nebula (upper right). The Moon does not completely disappear as it passes through the Earth shadow because of the refraction of sunlight by the Earth’s atmosphere into the shadow cone; if the Earth had no atmosphere, the Moon would be completely dark during an eclipse. Earth blocks the direct light from the sun but some indirect light passing through Earth's atmosphere still manages to reach the moon. Since dust and gases in Earth's atmosphere filter blue wavelengths from sunlight, the remaining light is reddened. The moon appears to change from brilliant silver to between bright orange and dark red during a lunar eclipse. Babak Tafreshi/

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