Total Lunar Eclipse Viewing at UNC Asheville

A total lunar eclipse will take place on September 27, 2015. It is the latter of two total lunar eclipses in 2015, and the final in a tetrad (four total lunar eclipses in a series). Other eclipses in the tetrad are those of April 15, 2014, October 8, 2014, and April 4, 2015.
This Sunday, September 27th, 8:30 p.m. – midnight, UNC Asheville will host a viewing of the upcoming total lunar eclipse, and you’re all invited! Unlike our public stargazes, registration is not required to attend.

The viewing will take place in lot P8 on the UNC Asheville campus beginning at 8:30 p.m. The eclipse begins at 9:07 p.m., with totality beginning at 10:11 p.m., and the event will end at midnight. We will be turning off the lights in P8 to provide for a better viewing experience.

Please park in the Reuter Center lot, lot P10, and walk across the road to lot P8. Those with special needs may be dropped off in P8.

A determination about the weather and possible cancellation will be made prior to the event and will be posted to

This is the last total lunar eclipse viewable in Asheville until 2019, so even if you don’t join us, be sure to look up that night to catch a glimpse of it.

Read more about what else makes this eclipse special on Lookout Observatory’s Special Events webpage.

Rare Blood Moon Event

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Look to the sky’s early morning on Wednesday, October 8, 2014 for a rare lunar event! We are in store for a total lunar eclipse. The last one we had before 2014 was dated back to December 2011. The total lunar eclipse that is taking place early morning on October 8, 2014 is the second of two total lunar eclipses in 2014, and the second in a tetrad (four total lunar eclipses in series). Other eclipses in the tetrad are those of April 15, 2014, April 4, 2015, and September 28, 2015.

Not only are we going to be able to experience a total lunar eclipse, but it is said that the moon will glow a reddish hue, which is were the name “blood moon” comes from. The moon will be turning this red color because of sunlight that is scattered throughout the earth’s atmosphere.

If you are in for cloudy skies this evening, don’t worry, you can watch the lunar event live online. Just follow this link to the The Slooh Community Observatory and NASA: 

Here are a list of times to start watching!

Wednesday’s eclipse times:

Partial eclipse begins: 4:15 a.m. CDT

Total eclipse begins: 5:25 a.m. CDT

Moment of full moon: 5:51 a.m. CDT

Greatest eclipse: 5:55 a.m. CDT

Total eclipse ends: 6:24 a.m. CDT

Moonset: 6:45-7 a.m. CDT in Alabama

Partial eclipse ends: 7:34 a.m. CDT

Eastern times are one hour later, so be on the lookout starting around 5am if you are on the east coast!

Last Lunar Eclipse until 2014

Look in the western sky Saturday morning before dawn, and if the weather is clear and you’re in the right place, you will be rewarded with the last lunar eclipse of 2011.

For just under an hour, the disk of the full moon will almost disappear, turning a dark, rusty red.  The catch for Americans is that you’ll miss almost everything unless you’re west of the Mississippi.  Totality — when the moon is completely consumed by Earth’s shadow — begins at 6:06 a.m. Pacific time Saturday, and ends at 6:57 a.m. Even on the Pacific coast, dawn will start to brighten the sky before the eclipse is over.

Still, if you happen to be up, a lunar eclipse can be a quiet, refreshing experience.  Depending on the atmospheric conditions where you are, the moon may turn a rich orange, or it may become hard to pick out in the sky. The reddish hue comes from sunlight that is bent by Earth’s atmosphere. As happens during a vivid sunrise or sunset, most colors other than red are absorbed by the air. Read More

Did You Know?
A lunar eclipse takes place when the moon, following its orbit around us, passes directly behind Earth as seen from the sun.  It is the opposite of a solar eclipse, when the moon passes between the sun and Earth. Since the moon’s orbit is slightly tilted, the bodies do not align perfectly during most months — but the rules of orbital mechanics are such that in any given year, there will be at least two and no more than seven solar or lunar eclipses.

See Google’s Lunar Eclipse “Doodle” from June 2011