Circumscribed Lunar Halo and Solar Halo Display

February 25, 2019

Halos_abraham_190121_22 (1)

Photographer: Tamas Abraham 
Summary Authors: Tamas Abraham; Jim Foster

February 2019 Viewer's ChoiceAfter observing last month's total lunar eclipse at dawn from my house in Zsámbék, Hungary, I was surprised to see this beautiful circumscribed lunar halo take shape (top photo). The camera is facing west. Note that this halo is more oval-shaped than circular.

On the following morning, when I looked out the window at the rising Sun, I noticed a striking halo display (bottom photo). Accompanying the 22 degree solar halo were an upper tangent arc and fragments of a colorful supralateral arc. Sunlight or moonlight passing through ice crystals, either in cirrus clouds or free-falling in the atmosphere, are responsible for all of these halos.

How fortunate that within a little more than 24 hours I was able to view the lunar eclipse and these superb halos. Top photo taken on January 21, 2019, bottom photo taken on January 22, 2019.

Photo Details: Canon EOS 400D camera; Canon EF-S 10-22 USM lens.