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How does a lunar eclipse happen?

Tuesday, April 15, 2014 | 8:37 p.m. CDT
A total lunar eclipse, or "blood moon" is seen near a cooling tower at the MU power plant around 2:30 a.m. Tuesday. The eclipse marks the beginning of a "lunar tetrad," or a series of four lunar eclipses in a two-year span.

A lunar eclipse occurs only during a full moon when Earth is directly between the sun and moon. During a total lunar eclipse, the moon often has a vibrant red-orange hue. The light from the sun refracts around Earth's atmosphere into the planet's shadow, casting a reddish hue over the moon. The phenomenon is known as a "blood moon."


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