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When Is the Next Eclipse? | 2022 Solar and Lunar Eclipse Dates | Almanac.com

When Is the Next Eclipse? | 2022 Solar and Lunar Eclipse Dates

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2022 eclipse times and dates, including solar eclipses, lunar eclipses, and transits.

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In 2022, there will be two eclipses of the Moon, two eclipses of the Sun, and no transits of Mercury. Two of the eclipses will be visible from parts of North America.

Eclipse Dates for 2022

April 30, 2022: Partial Eclipse of the Sun. This eclipse is not visible from North America. (The partial solar eclipse is visible from the southeastern Pacific Ocean, the Antarctic Peninsula, and southern South America.)

May 15, 2022: Total Eclipse of the Moon. This eclipse is visible from North America, except in northwestern regions. The Moon will enter the penumbra at 9:31 P.M. EDT on May 15 (6:31 P.M. PDT) and leave it at 2:52 A.M. EDT on May 16 (11:52 P.M. PDT on May 15).

October 25, 2022: Partial Eclipse of the Sun. This eclipse is not visible from North America. (The partial solar eclipse is visible from Greenland, Iceland, Europe, northeastern Africa, the Middle East, western Asia, India, and western China.)

November 8, 2022: Total Eclipse of the Moon. This eclipse is visible from North America, although the Moon will be setting during the eclipse for observers in eastern regions. The Moon will enter the penumbra at 3:01 A.M. EST on November 8 (12:01 A.M. PST) and leave it at 8:58 A.M. EST (5:58 A.M. PST).

What Is an Eclipse?

The two types of eclipses that we witness here on Earth are solar eclipses and lunar eclipses:

  • A solar eclipse occurs when the Moon passes directly in front of the Sun, partially or entirely blocking out its light. Solar eclipses are visible only in certain areas and require eye protection to be viewed safely.
  • A lunar eclipse occurs when the full Moon enters the shadow of Earth, which cuts off all or part of the sunlight reflected off the Moon. Lunar eclipses are technically visible from the entire night side of Earth, but during a penumbral eclipse, the dimming of the Moon’s illumination is slight. Learn more about lunar terminology.

Not all eclipses are the same, however. There are a few different ways for lunar and solar eclipses to happen:

  • A total eclipse (of either the Moon or the Sun) occurs when the Moon or Sun is entirely blocked out.
    • During a total lunar eclipse, the Moon is completely obscured by the dark center of Earth’s shadow (called the umbra), giving the Moon a dark, reddish hue.
    • During a total solar eclipse, the Sun is completely obscured by the Moon, resulting in a brief period of awe-inspiring darkness.
  • A partial eclipse (of either the Moon or the Sun) occurs when only part of the Moon or Sun is obscured. 
  • An annular eclipse is a type of solar eclipse. Annular eclipses are similar to total solar eclipses (where the Sun is completely obscured by the Moon), but in an annular eclipse, the Moon’s apparent size is smaller than the Sun’s, meaning that the Sun is not completely obscured. This results in a very bright ring of light called an annulus.
  • A penumbral eclipse is a type of lunar eclipse. Penumbral eclipses occur when the Moon enters only the faint outer edge of Earth’s shadow (called the penumbra), which causes the Moon to appear slightly darker than usual. The effect is so slight that a penumbral eclipse can be hard to recognize unless you know to look for it! 

There is also a phenomenon called a transit, which is similar to an eclipse, though not quite as visually stunning:

  • A transit occurs when one celestial body passes between a larger celestial body and a third celestial body. For example, when Mercury passes between the Sun and the Earth, this is called a transit of Mercury. Because Earth is the third planet from the Sun, we are able to observe transits of both Mercury and Venus.