Photographing the Lunar Eclipse

If you would like to photograph the Lunar Eclipse, be sure to check out some of the following sites for tips and techniques.


In addition, it doesn't hurt to make a practice run on Sunday night (framing the moon with some interesting trees, practice timing, etc).

Finally, if you have an SLR camera (i.e., camera with removable lens) and a t-ring for your camera, we will have one of our scopes set up so that people can take turns taking pictures through the telescope. It will be simple prime-focus photography. If you would like to take a picture through the telescope, you must provide your own camera (and film), t-ring, and preferably your own shutter release cable.

Penumbral Eclipse Begins: 05:29:17 UT ~12:30am not noticeable Partial Eclipse Begins: 06:32:37 UT ~ 1:30am moon enters umbra Total Eclipse Begins: 07:40:47 UT ~ 2:40am moon is totally in umbra Greatest Eclipse: 08:16:57 UT ~ 3:17am mid-eclipse Total Eclipse Ends: 08:53:08 UT ~ 3:53am moon starts to leave umbra Partial Eclipse Ends: 10:01:20 UT ~ 5:01am completely out of umbra Penumbral Eclipse Ends: 11:04:31 UT ~ 6:05am moon is out of penumbra

Interesting parts happen between 1:30-5:00am.

What: Total Lunar Eclipse observing
Where: UMD Observatory, Metzerott Rd
When: 21 December 2010, 1-4am
Parking: Observatory Lot, overflow in UMD Systems Admin

Go/No-Go Decision: Go! As of 11:45pm (Mon 20 Dec) it is clear, therefore the Observatory will open at 1am Tue 21 Dec.

Students and the public are invited to come view the Total Lunar Eclipse on 21 December with Dept. of Astronomy Observatory staff. Weather permitting, the eclipse will be visible with the un-aided eye (the bright full moon will turn dark and seemingly disappear as it passes through the Earth's shadow). Observatory staff will be on hand to answer questions about the event as well as having some smaller telescopes for visitors to look through. The event is free! If you like, bring a lawn chair (or blanket), binoculars and some light snacks and have a picnic under the stars! No alcoholic beverages, smoking, or pets.

Where to look in the sky...

You don't have to come to the observatory to see the Lunar Eclipse. You can stay at home as well. Just look high in the SW sky around 1:30am. The moon will be above Orion. Between 3 and 3:30am, the Moon will be in the main part of the shadow (umbra) and will be darkest. It will be in the SW. By 5am, the moon will be low in the west getting ready to set.

graphic Lunar Eclipse circumstances
The sky at 1:30am Tue 21 Dec. Facing roughly southwest. The two circles mark the location of the Earth's shadow in the sky. Moon is in the penumbra and getting ready to enter the umbra.

Observing Elsewhere