Miguel Claro is a professional photographer, author and science communicator based in Lisbon, Portugal, who creates spectacular images of the night sky. As a European Southern Observatory Photo Ambassador and member of The World At Night and the official astrophotographer of the Dark Sky Alqueva Reserve, he specializes in astronomical "Skyscapes" that connect both Earth and night sky. Join him here as he takes us through his photograph "Red Worlds."
The Red Planet makes a close approach to the blood-red moon in this photo taken during the longest total lunar eclipse of the century, on July 27, 2018.
Appearing as a red-orange "star" approximately 6 degrees to the right of the moon, Mars joined the red celestial party in the night sky as the full "Thunder Moon" dipped into Earth's shadow. This mosaic, captured from the Dark Sky Alqueva Reserve in Portugal, shows both in the same field of view.
During a lunar eclipse, the moon passes through Earth's shadow, giving the natural satellite a blood-red hue. This particular lunar eclipse coincided with Mars reaching opposition, or a point in its orbit at which it is on the opposite side of Earth from the sun, making it appear bigger and brighter in the night sky. And a few days later, Mars made its closest approach in 15 years.
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