Total Lunar Eclipse -2101-12-21

In December 2010, Project Moonwalkers challenged people to make a report or take pictures or make drawings or poems about the Lunar Eclipse that occured late night of December 20th or early in the morning of December 21st depending on the location on Earth. This eclipse's maximum occured at 08h17min (UTC) which means it was early in the morning in Europe. The map bellow shows how the eclipse was seen all over the World.


The visibility of the Lunar Eclipse of December 21st.
Image credit: Wikipedia

The following scheme shows how the various stages of the eclipse were seen by observers that had the luck to have favorable weather conditions for the observation of the phenomena.


The Lunar Eclipse of December 21st.
Image credit: Wikipedia


For almost four centuries a total lunar eclipse hasn't coincided with the December solstice, called the Winter Solstice in Northern Hemisphere and Summer Solstice in Southern Hemisphere.  If weather conditions allowed a clear view of the sky Western Europe could see the first stages of the eclipse before moonset. On the rest of the world people from North America, Greenland and Iceland could see the entire event, and western Asia and Australia got the end of the eclipse after moonrise.

Many beautiful images were posted on the Internet by many lucky astronomers that had the weather cooperating with them.


Sequence from Toronto, Ontario. Sequence is in 15 minute increments, with 5 minute increments up until totality at 8:17am UTC.
Image credit: Tom Ruen/Wikipedia.

Space shuttle Discovery waits to roll back from Launch Pad 39A to the Vehicle Assembly Building (VAB) at NASA's Kennedy Space Center in Florida in the early morning hours of Dec 21, 2010, with the beginning of the total lunar eclipse clearly in view. 
Image credit: NASA/Kim Shiflett


In the majority of European countries where there was a possibility of seeing the  eclipse the bad weather made it impossible to be seen. This was my case. As shown bellow in Faro, Algarve, Portugal, where it usually never rains,  it was very cloudy and occasionally raining at the time the eclipse might have been seen.

The clouds over Algarve, Portugal, looking towards the direction where the Moon should be at 08h15min (UTC).
Image credit: EAAE/Alexandre Costa.


Luckily, this was not general. Some images can already be found on the Internet about the event in Europe. For instance Stu Atkinson has described his experience viewing this eclipse in the UK on his blog.


Lunar Eclipse  seen from Kendal Castle, Cumbria, UK.
Image credit: Stu Atkinson/Cumbrian Sky.

Some people didn't have photographic settings to make picture with their telescope so they just made a sketch. This was the case of Ted Judah who saw the eclipse at California and made the beautiful sketch we present bellow.


A sketch of the Dec. 21st lunar eclipse by Ted Judah.