The Chicago area and much of North America will experience a total lunar eclipse on Sunday, May 15, according to the Adler Planetarium. Weather permitting, Chicagoans will be able to see the eclipse starting at 8:32 p.m.
The height of the event will be between about 10:30 p.m. to midnight, with the eclipse concluding at 1:50 a.m. May 16.
During a lunar eclipse, according to an Adler announcement Monday, the Earth comes between the Sun and the Moon, blocking direct sunlight and covering the Moon in shadow. The Moon will appear to turn a red, orange or gray color.
A total lunar eclipse happens once every 2½ years or so.
According to a NASA website, the red color comes from the way light waves are scattered by the Earth’s atmosphere. During a lunar eclipse, the Moon turns red because the only sunlight reaching the Moon passes through our atmosphere and is scattered by dust and clouds, same as during a sunset.
The Adler will host a free outdoor lunar eclipse viewing event on May 15, from 9 p.m. to midnight, weather permitting. Telescopes will be out and available for guests to use, and Adler staff will be available to answer questions. Free reservations are required at tickets.adlerplanetarium.org.
This eclipse will be visible from North and South America, Europe, Africa and parts of Asia, according to Space.com, and a second total lunar eclipse of 2022 will follow on Nov. 8, visible at least partially from Asia, Australia, North America, parts of Europe and most of South America.
NASA keeps a list predicting lunar eclipses until 2100.