Q:

What is a blood moon?

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Quick Answer

In astronomy, the term blood moon refers to a complete lunar eclipse which causes the moon to appear red. The moon looks red due to dispersed light from Earth's sunrises and sunsets that is refracted back onto the moon's surface.

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What is a blood moon?
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Different atmospheric conditions during an eclipse, including humidity, dust, temperature and more, can make the blood moon vary in color, from a more coppery hue to a deep red. In folklore, the term hunter's moon is also sometimes used interchangeably with the term blood moon. This blood moon refers to a specific full moon, however, which occurs after the harvest moon and the autumn equinox, usually in October.

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Related Questions

  • Q:

    What causes a blood moon?

    A:

    A blood moon is a deep reddening of the moon caused by the Earth passing between the moon and the sun. During the period of the eclipse, light from the sun passes around the Earth and through its atmosphere. This scatters the short-wavelength blue light from the sun but allows the longer-wavelength red and orange light to reach the moon.

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  • Q:

    How big is the moon?

    A:

    Earth's sole natural satellite, the moon, has a circumference of 6,783.5 miles around its equator. Its surface area is 14,647,439.75 square miles, which is approximately 0.07 times that of the Earth.

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  • Q:

    How old is the moon?

    A:

    The scientific consensus is that the Earth's moon formed four and half billion years ago. About 100 million years after the formation of the solar system, another small planet is likely to have collided with the Earth, resulting in the formation of the Moon.

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  • Q:

    Why do we have a moon?

    A:

    No concrete evidence explains why there is a moon. The best hypothesis presented is the Giant Impactor hypothesis: It suggests that around 4.45 billion years ago, while the Earth was still forming, a large object hit the Earth at an angle.

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