One Total Lunar Eclipse Photo t

 We've seen some great images from the total lunar eclipse this week. But this one might top them all.

Astrophotographer Andrew McCarthy created this incredible composite image, showing the Moon in various stages of the eclipse throughout the night.

"The size and shape of Earth's shadow is clearly visible here," McCarthy said on Twitter. "These events are absolutely magical to witness and quite surreal."

McCarthy witnessed and photographed the entirety of the eclipse from his backyard in Arizona. Besides the noticeable 'band-aid' shape of the image, if you look closely, you can see exactly how the Moon moved through Earth's shadow throughout the eclipse.

The other striking feature of this composite is just how crisp, clear and detailed each image of the Moon is. How did McCarthy do it?

“Overall, I shot around 150,000 images,” McCarthy told Universe Today. “My strategy was to first take photos using my c11 at the native 2800mm with the asi174mm’s fast but tiny sensor. I imaged the Moon in small segments capturing thousands of frames per segment, which were then sorted, stacked and sharpened, so when the panorama of the moon was stitched together it had incredible detail.”

McCarthy said he did this 3 times throughout the night. Then, he used his Sony a7ii camera mounted to a 8-inch Celestron EdgeHD800 telescope at 2000mm to capture the entire Moon with great resolution at each capture, which took around 500 photos throughout the night. Then, these images were combined with the a previously captured high-resolution photo of the Moon to provide incredible detail to create the final composite, which was assembled in Photoshop from these images.

McCarthy calls the photo “Shadows and Sunsets,” as during a total lunar eclipse, the Moon shines in the colors from all the sunrises and sunsets occurring on Earth. The Moon looks reddish because Earth’s atmosphere absorbs the other colors while it bends some sunlight toward the Moon. Sunlight bending through the atmosphere and absorbing other colors is also why sunsets we see here on Earth are often orange and red.

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