Astronaut Shoots Photos Of Blood Moon From Space

Space might be the best place to view an eclipse.

German astronaut Alexander Gerst, a geophysicist and spaceflight veteran photographed the lunar eclipse on Friday from his temporary home about 250 miles above the Earth. He shared his work on social media.

Astronauts like him, who are staying at the International Space Station (ISS), see the moon several times per day because they orbit Earth approximately once every 90 minutes. Their view is far above any clouds, which could obscure the view of the moon for those watching from Earth.

Just took a photo of the #LunarEclipse from the @Space_Station. Tricky to capture. The slight hue of blue is actually the Earth's atmosphere, just before the Moon is "diving into it". #Horizons pic.twitter.com/X8r7puloQl

— Alexander Gerst (@Astro_Alex) July 27, 2018

According to Business Insider, Gerst departed for the ISS on June 6. Before he launched into orbit, the astronaut had trained on Earth to use photo gear at the space station.

He shared his photographs on Twitter and Flickr.

"Just took a photo of the lunar eclipse from the International Space Station. Tricky to capture," Gerst said in one caption. "The slight hue of blue is actually the Earth's atmosphere, just before the moon is 'diving into it.'"

The full lunar eclipse, often referred to as a blood moon because of its reddish color, happens when the moon is in the Earth's shadow.

Caught the Moon leaving Earth's core shadow, just before setting over the South Atlantic. Last photo of the #LunarEclipse taken from #ISS. #Horizons pic.twitter.com/aNCzerchZ5

— Alexander Gerst (@Astro_Alex) July 27, 2018

Light from Earth's sunrises and sunsets can then hits the surface of the moon. When this red light strikes the moon's surface, it also looks red, Space.com reported.

The color of the moon can change depending on the amount of pollution, how many clouds are blocking the light, or how much debris is in the atmosphere.

This last eclipse was visible from the eastern hemisphere. People in Asia, Australia, New Zealand and much of Europe and Africa all had the opportunity to catch a glimpse. The event was not visible from North America.