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Difference Between Solar And Lunar Eclipses

Difference Between Solar And Lunar Eclipse With Diagram

What’s the difference between a solar and lunar eclipse?

Whats the difference between solar and lunar eclipse? In layman, when the sun gets darker, we call it a solar eclipse. On the other hand, when the moon gets darker, we call it a lunar eclipse. Not to mention, there are so many types of solar and lunar eclipse, depending on the fact that how much of the sun or moon is obscured by another celestial object.

But, before going deep into these kinds of questions like how much of a sun or a moon gets darker and by what astronomical phenomena. Let me present you with a quick review regarding the basic difference between solar eclipse and lunar eclipse. Keep reading for a proper understanding of the subject.

Avoid seeing the solar eclipse with naked eyes. Enjoy the glimpse of the lunar eclipse with naked eyes.

What Is The Difference Between A Solar And Lunar Eclipse

An eclipse refers to a phenomenon that happens when the light from the sun is blocked completely or partially by a planet or the moon . During eclipses, the Moon, the Sun, and the Earth are in line. There are two types of eclipses from the Earths perspective the solar eclipse and the lunar eclipse .

Types Of Lunar Eclipses

Depending on the fact that how much earth is obscuring the sunlight from falling on the moon, it can be further bifurcated into three types.

Total Lunar Eclipse

A total lunar eclipse occurs when the moon completely passes through the earths umbra. Not to mention, an umbra is the darkest part of the earths shadow.

Therefore, when the moon is completely immersed into the earths umbra, the umbra covers the entire surface of the moon. Moreover, the total eclipse of the moon is also known as the blood moon.

Partial Lunar Eclipse

As the name suggests, a partial lunar eclipse occurs when the moon partially passes through the earths umbra.

Penumbral Lunar Eclipse

Penumbral Lunar Eclipse A penumbral lunar eclipse occurs when the moon passes through the earths penumbra. Not to mention, a penumbra is the lightest part of the earths shadow.

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Lunar Eclipse In Culture

Several cultures have myths related to lunar eclipses or allude to the lunar eclipse as being a good or bad omen. The Egyptians saw the eclipse as a sow swallowing the Moon for a short time other cultures view the eclipse as the Moon being swallowed by other animals, such as a jaguar in Mayan tradition, or a mythical three-legged toad known as Chan Chu in China. Some societies thought it was a demon swallowing the Moon, and that they could chase it away by throwing stones and curses at it. The Ancient Greeks correctly believed the Earth was round and used the shadow from the lunar eclipse as evidence. Some Hindus believe in the importance of bathing in the Ganges River following an eclipse because it will help to achieve salvation.

Solar And Lunar Eclipses

Difference between solar eclipse and lunar eclipse

A solar eclipse occurs when the Moon passes between the Sun and Earth, casting the Moon’s shadow on Earth. A solar eclipse can only happen during a New Moon. The Moon’s orbit is titled 5 degrees to Earth’s orbit around the Sun. Therefore a solar eclipse is a relatively rare phenomena and a Total or Annular eclipse even more rare, with the Hybrid eclipse the rarest of all.

To understand the difference between a Total and Annular eclipse of the Sun, it must be understood that the Moon has an elliptical orbit around Earth. In fact, the Moon’s distance from Earth varies from a minimum of 221,000 to a maximum of 252,000 miles. Therefore the Moon’s apparent size in our sky will vary by 13%. When the Moon’s orbit is toward its minimum distance from Earth, the Moon will appear visually as a larger disk than the Sun. If an eclipse occurs during this time, it will be a Total solar eclipse because the Moon has totally obscured the Sun’s disk, producing the beautiful solar corona ejecting outward from the Sun. One important element to remember though is that the Moon’s shadow will obviously become narrower as it is cast from the Moon to Earth . Therefore the path of totality on Earth is narrow. It is also very short-lived as the Moon is moving quickly away from its perfect location of being situated between the Sun and Earth.

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What Is A Lunar Eclipse

A lunar eclipse occurs when the earth comes between the moon and the sun. Therefore, as a result, the earths shadow obstructs the sunlight falling on the surface of the moon.

Moreover, this natural phenomenon can only occur on the eve of the full moon day. Just because the size of the earth is too big as compared to the size of the moon, an eclipse of the moon can occur for more than 1 hour.

Reasons For The Moons Appearance

Although during an eclipse of the Moon, when Earth obstructs light from the Sun from squarely reaching the surface of Earths Moon, it nevertheless could be seen by eye, by people. The reason behind this is that the Earths atmosphere contorts the Suns light, which is then diffused on the Moon, lighting it up.

This phenomenon occurs when sunlight is refracted towards the Earths surface when it travels across its atmosphere. The passing portion of light with shorter wavelengths refracts towards the surface where it is scattered and filtered out, while those with long wavelengths, such as red and orange, go through and are again refracted onto the Moons surface. This phenomenon creates a reddish-orange glimmer on its surface, which we can observe from Earth. It also provides the blood moon name for this occurrence.

People observing the Moon years ago during an eclipse noticed that the Earths shadow on the Moons surface was circular. This observation enabled them to conclude that the Earth was round. Years later, scientists are also discovering new information about the Moon, such as its surface from lunar eclipses.

Solar eclipses also provide them with opportunities to observe the corona of the Sun. This word refers to the top layer of the Sun. Scientists use ground and space-based instruments to study the corona during an annular eclipse when the Moon blocks the Sun.

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What Are Lunar Phases

Our Moon doesn’t shine, it reflects. Just like daytime here on Earth, sunlight illuminates the Moon.

We just can’t always see it.

When sunlight hits off the Moon’s far side the side we can’t see without from Earth the aid of a spacecraft it is called a new Moon.

When sunlight reflects off the near side, we call it a full Moon.

The rest of the month we see parts of the daytime side of the Moon, or phases. These eight phases are, in order, new Moon, waxing crescent, first quarter, waxing gibbous, full Moon, waning gibbous, third quarter and waning crescent. The cycle repeats once a month .

Total Eclipse Of The Sun

Difference between a Solar and Lunar Eclipse

It occurs when the Moon completely hides the Sun. People can see this type of solar eclipse from a minimal region on Earth. Observers witnessing this phenomenon situate themselves in the middle of its shadow on the planet. Darkness envelops the entire sky, and it gets much darker like the night. This type of eclipse usually occurs when the Earth, Moon, and Sun line up with each other in a straight line.

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What Is Solar Eclipse

A solar eclipse is a phenomenon that occurs when the sun, moon, and the earth are in alignment with each other. During this eclipse, the moon blocks the sun, due to which the sunlight cannot fall on the earths surface.

Solar eclipses can be total, partial, and annular, depending on the extent of alignment. Partial solar eclipse occurs when the moon is not completely in alignment with the sun. In this case, only a fraction of the sunlight faces a hitch to reach the earth.

Meanwhile, a total solar eclipse takes place upon the complete masking of the sun by the moon, and this results in the complete darkening of the sky.

Annular solar eclipse is quite different as the moon covers the sun, but there is plenty of sunlight around the edges of the moon. It is also one kind of partial solar eclipse.

Solar eclipses take place on a new moon day and can be observed only in a few places. Their duration is pretty short, but they are observed for a lot of times in a year. They have pretty serious retina damaging effects and can cause permanent blindness if observed through bare eyes.

Difference Between Solar Eclipse And Lunar Eclipse: Explanation

Exams Prep Master| Updated On -Jul 15, 2022

Solar eclipse and lunar eclipse are types of eclipses which occur naturally in the universe. This phenomenon is dependent on the position of the alignment of the celestial bodies in a straight line. We know that the earth revolves around the sun at the same time of the moon rotating around the earth. When all three of them coincide in a straight line such that it is partially hidden to the observer, an eclipse takes place.

Let us study in detail about an eclipse, its types, and the differences between solar eclipse and lunar eclipse.

Table of Content

Eclipse refers to an astronomical event which occurs when a celestial body is hidden for sometime by moving into the shadow of another body. It also happens if another body comes in between itself and those who see or observe it. When three or more celestial bodies are aligned in one straight line, the term is coined as syzygy.

The term has been derived from the Greek word ekleipsis, which means the downfall or darkening of a heavenly body. It basically implies the dark phase or the phase of the body where it ceases to exist any longer.

Eclipses are separated by certain intervals of time. This time period is known as an eclipse season. Solar eclipses can occur two to four times a year, however a total solar eclipse may be decades apart from the next one. The frequency of lunar eclipses per year is two.

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Definition Of Solar Eclipse

Solar Eclipse, as the name suggest, is the shadowing of the sun by the moon. It takes place when the moon crosses the suns plane while orbiting the earth and comes in front of the sun, which obscures its view either partly or entirely.

Thus, it ultimately blocks the sunlight from falling on earth and due to which some parts of the earth are under the moons shadow and causes the solar eclipse. This event occurs only during the new moon when the moon is amid the sun and the earth. You can see the figure given below:

There are three types of solar eclipse:

  • Total Solar Eclipse: When the moon fully covers the Sun, and its umbra and penumbra are casted on Earth, then it is called as the total solar eclipse.
  • Partial Solar Eclipse: If the moon covers only a part of the Sun and only its penumbra is casted on Earth, then this is known as Partial Lunar Eclipse.
  • Annular Solar Eclipse: It is the situation when moons disc covers the center if the suns disc and its antumbra are casted on Earth.

Main Differences Between Solar Eclipse And Lunar Eclipse

The difference between solar and lunar eclipse
  • During a Solar Eclipse, the moon crosses in front of the Sun, blocking the passage of light from the source. Whereas, in the case of the Lunar Eclipse, the Earth passes between the Moon and the Sun, shutting out those celestial bodies and causing the Eclipse.
  • Solar Eclipse occurs once after every 1.5 years. On the other hand, Lunar Eclipse occurs more frequently, i.e., twice a year.
  • A Solar eclipse stays for almost 5 minutes to 7 minutes and is witnesses in few places. Whereas a Lunar Eclipse lasts almost for an hour and is witnessed in many places.
  • A high risk of blindness exists if the substance is viewed with the naked eye, as it destroys the retina. Lunar eclipses can be viewed with no protective eyewear because they do not inflict any injuries to the eyes.
  • A solar eclipse occurs whenever there is a new phase of the moon. In addition, a lunar eclipse actually takes place during the full moons period of time.
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    Occurrence Of Solar Eclipse

    A solar eclipse normally occurs somewhere between 2 to 5 times a year. In fact, as per the available astronomical writings of the past century, the earth encounters an average of 2.4 eclipses of the sun every year.

    Well, if I talk about the recent and upcoming solar events, here is the list of some of the recent and upcoming solar eclipses.

    Recent Solar Eclipses

    • Annular solar eclipse
    • Total solar eclipse
    • Annular solar eclipse

    Upcoming Solar Eclipses

    • Partial Solar Eclipse

    Solar Vs Lunar Eclipse

    AN eclipse that is the solar eclipse, happens when the moon passes in between the sun and the earth. During a solar eclipse the satellite moon fully or partially hides the suns rays that are for a few minutes. This Happens once in around 18 months. The three types of eclipse that are said to be the solar are total solar eclipse partial solar eclipse and then we can say that the annular solar eclipse. The Solar eclipse that is seen from a few places that are only. These all things happen during the day. AN eclipse that is the solar eclipse happens on a moon or more clearly a new moon day. It is said to be not safe to see a solar eclipse that is through naked eyes. We need glasses that are protective to avoid any harm to the eyes.

    A lunar eclipse that we can see generally happens when the earth passes in between the sun and the moon. That is during an eclipse that is the lunar eclipse the earths shade partially or we can say fully hides the moon for a brief period of time. This whole process occurs two times in a year. We can conclude here that the three types of lunar eclipses are total lunar eclipse and then the partial lunar eclipse and a penumbral lunar eclipse. The Lunar eclipses that are spotted from many places not only from earth.this process occurs during nights that is a lunar eclipse that happens on a full moon day. It is said that it is perfectly safe to see a lunar eclipse too with naked eyes. we do not need any protective covering to view it all alone.

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    Solar Eclipse And Lunar Eclipse

    This article briefly explains solar and lunar eclipse along with differences between the two. Read to know more about them.

    Table of Content

    Space is a fascinating part of human life where most people cant go yet. Even though humans are working towards their dream of reaching out in space and grasping all the information about it, it is still more of a mystery. Scientists know little of what is there, but the amount of growth they have experienced in the last hundred years is commendable. Eclipse knowledge is one of those and will be discussed briefly in this article.

    Solar Eclipse Vs Lunar Eclipse

    Types of Solar and Lunar Eclipses
    Solar Eclipse Lunar Eclipse
    The solar eclipse is the one in which the moon is in between the earth and the sun. The lunar eclipse is the one in which the earth is in between the sun and the moon.
    It occurs once in 18 months. It occurs twice a year.
    It lasts for about 5-7 minutes. It lasts for an hour.
    It was witnessed in a few places. It was witnessed in many places.
    It occurs during day-time.
    The solar eclipse happens in the new moon phase. When the moon is in its full moon phase, a lunar eclipse happens.
    If you look directly, then there are high chances of losing vision as it damages the retina. Witnessing a lunar eclipse with bare eyes is harmless as it does not cause any damage to the eyes.

    Scientists eagerly wait for an eclipse to occur because the effect it has on all life on earth is of particular interest to them. Solar eclipse helps scientists to gather more knowledge about the sun and its position with respect to the sun.

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    Difference Between Solar Eclipse And Lunar Eclipse

    Last updated on by Surbhi S

    Eclipse alludes to the blocking of light from an astronomical object by the passage of another amidst it. It is an event in which three celestial bodies, i.e. the sun, moon and earth are in tandem. When the moon is in the middle of sun and earth, a solar eclipse occurs, and if the earth is in between sun and moon, it is the case of the lunar eclipse.

    The reason for the occurrence of the eclipse is that there are two points where the orbit of the moon passes through suns plane called as nodes. When the earth travels along its orbit, these points are in alignment with the sun, and it happens about two times in a year. Read out this article to have a better understanding of the difference between solar eclipse and lunar eclipse.

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