Lightning and Lunar Eclipse

August 03, 2011

Photographer: Chris Kotsiopoulos
Summary Authors: Chris Kotsiopoulos; Jim Foster

August 2011 Earth Science Picture of the Day Viewer's ChoiceThe photo above shows cloud-to-ground lightning drilling the Aegean Sea from a sky that includes the totally eclipsed Moon. It was taken on the night of June 15, 2011 from Ikaria Island during a thunderstorm. I was very fortunate to see the eclipse at all. After months of planning to photograph the eclipse, I was crestfallen as the thunderstorm developed at just the wrong time. However, for approximately 10 minutes in the middle of totality, and with the storm still active, a small window of clear sky allowed me to detect the shadowed Moon, which appeared a coppery color. It looks more cherry-like in this nearly one half minute exposure.

Photo Details: Canon EOS 550D camera;, 15/6/2011; 23:05 (UT +3); shutter speed of 28 seconds; aperture value of 4.0; ISO 400; f/2.8; Canon EF15mm -- fisheye lens; focal length was 15.0 mm.