The Moon is preparing to dress in red: on the night between 15 and 16 May there will be its total eclipse, the so-called 'Red Moon'.
The phenomenon will also be visible from Italy, but only for the first part: the peak, in fact, will unfortunately be at dawn, when the Moon sets, and therefore will not be observable.
The event will be broadcast live by the Virtual Telescope Project, with images from Rome and the Americas, starting at 03.32 Italian time, the moment when the Moon will begin to enter the twilight cone created by the Earth as it transits in front of the Sun .
During the totality, but also in the advanced partial phase, the Moon acquires the characteristic color that gives its name to the phenomenon: this is due to the fact that at that moment the earth's atmosphere directs the red portion of the electromagnetic spectrum towards the satellite.
The same red halo would be visible even if we looked at the eclipse from the Moon instead of from the Earth: in that case, however, it would be an eclipse of the Sun, covered by the passage of our planet.
When the Moon is completely inside the shadow cone, the total phase will begin, at 05.29 Italian time, which will reach its maximum at 06.11.
However, on May 16 our satellite will set at 05.51, about 20 minutes after the start of totality and 20 minutes before the highlight, so it will be possible to follow just under half of the entire phenomenon.
The total eclipse will be perfectly visible to the naked eye, even without the help of binoculars or a telescope.
For the occasion, our satellite will be close to the minimum distance from the Earth (perigee), a condition popularly referred to as "supermoon": the star will appear a little larger than the average, even if it will be difficult to realize it.
2022 will also offer us a second eclipse, on November 8, but the latter will be completely invisible from Italy.