ON THE 27th of July 2018, saw the longest ‘’blood moon’’ eclipse sighting of the century. In case you have missed it, you may want to know why the moon turned red. Red moon only occurs during a total lunar eclipse, when the three planets are in line.
This phenomenon occurs when the earth blocks all of the sunlight from reaching the moon with the Earth in the middle. In theory, the moon would disappear in sight within the Earth’s shadow. But instead of going dark, the moon appears red due to a phenomenon known as Rayleigh scattering. When the sun shines onto the earth, the blue light is scattered outward by earth’s atmosphere while the red light is refracted or bent inward toward the moon, making it red.
This occurrence also explains why the sky turns red during sunsets and sunrises! Besides that, the brightness of the moon depends on the dusts and clouds that are in the earth’s atmosphere.
For instance, following a volcanic activity, ashes can block out enough light to render the moon a darker red or even black.