A supermoon, blue moon, and total lunar eclipse will coincide
When can I see the supermoon and total lunar eclipse?
The best time to enjoy a supermoon is right after moonrise and before sunrise, when the moon is sitting on the horizon. It will appear its biggest and brightest because of a “moon illusion” effect that’s created when you are able to compare the lunar body to other objects for scale, like buildings and foliage.
For the real highlight of the show, the lunar eclipse will begin at 6:48am ET and reach its maximum at 8:30am ET. Viewers from eastern Asia, the Pacific, and western North America will get the best view, but viewers in eastern North America and Europe will also catch a partial eclipse.
What’s the best way to photograph the lunar eclipse?
To take a picture of the supermoon or the lunar eclipse with a smartphone, tap on the moon on the screen and hold your finger in place to lock the camera’s focus. Then adjust the exposure slider that appears next to your finger to get the right balance of light for your shot.
If you’re using a DSLR, NASA’s senior photographer Bill Ingalls recommends that you use the daylight white balance to adjust for the sunlight being reflected off the moon. He says that it’s important to keep in mind that the moon is a moving object: “It’s a balancing act between trying to get the right exposure and realizing that the shutter speed typically needs to be a lot faster.”
To get an original shot, Ingalls suggests taking a picture that puts the moon in context of a local landmark, something that gives your photo a sense of place. “Don’t make the mistake of photographing the moon by itself with no reference to anything,” say Ingalls. “Everyone will get that shot.”
Do I need special glasses to watch the supermoon and lunar eclipse?
Unlike the solar eclipse, the supermoon and the lunar eclipse are safe to view with the naked eye. There’s nothing to worry about if you find yourself enthralled and staring up into the sky for a very long time. Except maybe your neck.