Astrophotographer Caught a Meteor Striking the Moon During the Eclipse

Photo: ‘Super blood wolf moon’ inks Durango skies

See a rock smack the moon during the super blood wolf eclipse

It was called a "super blood wolf moon" because the moon was at its closest point in its orbit to the Earth, making it appear larger than normal, or "super"; a "blood" moon because of the reddish hue from the eclipse; and a "wolf" moon, which is the name for January's full moon.

It happened this weekend during the super blood moon and experts think it's the first time it's ever happened during a lunar eclipse. This project went on to become the MIDAS survey, which is run by Spain's University of Huelva and the Institute of Astrophysics of Andalucia.

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As it turns out, the eclipse was even more special than most observers had noticed, as the Moon was actually struck by a meteorite while everyone was gazing in wonder at its rusty appearance. Check out video from the event. Astroimager Jamie Cooper, from Dustin, England, caught an meteor impact on the moon.

Astrophysicist Jose Maria Madiedo confirmed to New Scientist that the flash of light seen by livestream-watchers was a meteor impacting the moon's surface.

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In a video from Griffith Observatory, the slam, visible as a brief, bright flash, occurs on the lower left part of the Moon while the scientists discuss the Moon's colour. Lunar meteorite impacts have been filmed previously; this marks the first time one was filmed during a total lunar eclipse.

Further investigation will be necessary to determine the size of the meteoroid and obtain pictures of its impact crater, but for a basis of comparison, the LCROSS mission plowed a Centaur upper stage (2.2 tons) into the lunar surface at 2.5 km/s. "It was a very exciting moment because I knew such a thing had never been recorded before".

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